Apple is updating its set of features aimed at families with the release of iOS 16, due out later this year. The company says it will now make it easier for parents to set up Apple devices with age-appropriate parental controls and features, and it’s updating Screen Time with a handful of improvements, like the ability to respond to requests for additional time from messages, among other things.
The company today already offers parental controls that allow parents to configure what kids can and cannot do on their devices, what content they can view and when they can use their device’s apps and features. With Family Sharing, users can also share their purchases and subscriptions with up to five other family members.
Now, Apple is adding a new feature, Quick Start, that it says will make it easier to set age-appropriate restrictions for apps, movies, books and music along with quick setup option for configuring other important parental controls. The feature, which resembles a setup option available to iPhone users, will let you bring the child’s device near the parent’s device to have the child’s set up with all the parental controls you have already selected and adjusted. Apple will also suggest the age-appropriate restrictions based on the child’s age if parents don’t want to have to manually configure each one.
In addition, Apple is making it easier for parents to respond to Screen Time requests from children. Previously, you’d have to navigate to the Settings to approve additional time. With the update, parents can respond directly from Messages, Apple says.
Another new feature is a Family Checklist that will include helpful tips like how to update the child’s settings when they get older, how to turn on location sharing and information about how to share your iCloud Plus subscription with everyone.