Apple Aims To Help Parents Crack Down On Kids' iPhone Use

Apple introduces iOS 12		
	Romain Dillet

   	7 hours

Apple introduces iOS 12 Romain Dillet @ 7 hours

"Today is all about software", said CEO Tim Cook as the tech giant unveiled the latest additions to iOS 12 - which powers the iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch - early Tuesday morning (AEST) at its annual Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) in San Jose, California. While Apple isn't the first company to come up with custom avatars, it's certainly done them the best.

When Apple releases the new iOS 12 update, you'll be able to use the group FaceTime feature with up 32 simultaneous participants. With iOS 12, Apple will start asking Safari users to provide informed consent to being tracked by Facebook on websites that have Facebook-enabled comment sections, "likes" and "shares". This is unfortunate because this will also erase the data that the iPhone X collected to learn the owner's face.

It's a very different approach from what Google and Amazon are doing with the Google Assistant and Alexa. But that limit highlights a selling point Apple could use in the enterprise.

Apple also launched a "Families" webpage in March, outlining ways in which parents can utilize the company's pre-existing features.

Acknowledging smartphone "addiction" Apple's software upgrades also include features that help users understand how much time they are spending on their devices, amid concerns of growing smartphone "addiction".

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The parent control system sits atop a broader system that adults, too, can use to monitor and limit their screen time.

They're introducing new controls allowing you to set up "do not disturb" modes that turn off notifications at night or during trips. During that time, app notifications will be blocked from showing up on the home screen.

These commands can be created in the Shortcuts app.

Animoji can be created to look similar to users' real-world appearance, or with a variety of digital accouterments like hats and costumes.

It did announce some new features, touted as "Shortcuts", but they're way more about text than voice and touted as "suggestions", that can be set up with a pre-arranged set of text categories. For example, you can hop into the auto and say "heading home", and Siri will tell you how much time you have left in your drive, turn on your thermostat at home (using Apple's HomeKit), and turn on the radio station you prefer for your drive.

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Another focus area in iOS 12 that is perhaps less visible but likely more important is new functionality for Siri, Apple's AI assistant platform.

"It's interesting that Apple talked about iOS 12 support for devices going back to the iPhone 6s", Schneemann told TechNewsWorld.

Dunn and his peers would like Apple to end the restrictions on iOS, which mean third-party apps like his don't work on the iPhone, thanks to the lack of permissions.

Apple will encourage users to share photos with their friends by suggesting such opportunities in a new "for you" tab.

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