I would like to protect my teen daughter by eliminating the use of imessage on her iphone. We have placed proper limits on her texting and monitor her use through our carrier. Like any resourceful teen, she now uses imessage to reach beyond the boundaries. We wish her to have opportunities to interact with friends via her phone, but we don't want it to go beyond the limits that have been set due to some past inappropriateness.
You can disable iMessages by having your teen go to settings and making all the changes she wants to the following items:
- Mail, Contacts, Calendars
- Twitter, Facebook, Flickr and Vimeo
Then you will want to observe that she turns off iMessages on the device and then lets you turn on restrictions with a PIN that you keep confidential from the teen.
In restrictions, under general in the settings app, you will want to prevent changes to Accounts about 2/3 of the way down the screen under ALLOW CHANGES text. Select "Don't Allow Changes" and then check that iMessages is now dimmed out in the settings app.
Now, that will restrict that one app - however there are hundreds of app store apps that allow chatting and you might have to consider also preventing app store installs entirely to mitigate that risk. However, with phones and iPods getting cheaper and cheaper, if a teen wants to communicate, it's going to be hard to prevent that with policies and technological efforts that are more geared for toddlers and pre-teens.
Good luck reaching some balance of control and trust going forward.
To disable iMessage on an iPhone. Within Settings...
- Go into Messages and turn iMessage off.
- Go into General and Restrictions. Enable Restrictions and enter a passcode, then near the bottom under "ALLOW CHANGES" go into Accounts and select "Don't allow changes".
The second step is the important one. The first step is easy to reverse, but the second one will prevent anyone from reversing it without knowing the passcode.