Apple Responds to Investor Criticism Over Smartphone Addiction by Young People

After two prominent shareholder groups wrote a letter asking Apple to play a larger role in addressing smartphone addiction among youth, the iPhone maker has responded.

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In a full statement posted by iMore, Apple says they have “always looked out for our kids”, noting they also “work hard to create powerful products that inspire, entertain, and educate children while also helping parents protect them online. We lead the industry by offering intuitive parental controls built right into the operating system.”

Apple says iOS devices today allow parents “the ability to control and restrict content including apps, movies, websites, songs and books, as well as cellular data, password settings and other features. Effectively anything a child could download or access online can be easily blocked or restricted by a parent.”

The company noted it started bringing parental controls to the iPhone back in 2008 when the App Store was born, adding to similar features made available to the Mac a few years before the iPhone was launched.

Apple stresses “We also have a long history of curating our content platforms to make sure they are free of offensive material, such as pornography, and clearly labeled so parents can determine if an app, movie or song is age-appropriate.”

The company continued to say “Of course, we are constantly looking for ways to make our experiences better. We have new features and enhancements planned for the future, to add functionality and make these tools even more robust.”

Apple concluded their statement by saying “We think deeply about how our products are used and the impact they have on users and the people around them. We take this responsibility very seriously and we are committed to meeting and exceeding our customers’ expectations, especially when it comes to protecting kids.”

While iOS parental controls can limit screen time and more, at the end of the day it comes down to parents educating and controlling the exposure their children have to devices.

Who’s responsible for ‘smartphone addiction’ when it comes to kids? Apple or parents?

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