2 kids with iPhones... Parent wants to setup controls. The two things I've seen are

Using SL would limit Time, Numbers, Data, etc from the phone itself... while the PC would limit access to stuff like porn and other bad sites within Safari.

If I use PC do I still need to pay for SL? Does SL do web filtering (IE: XXX) now or does it still not block Safari? Are there any limitations to using these two together?

Are there any other options worth noting? Or is it really limited these two options?


As a clarification... Parent has 2 "tweens". Boy & Girl. Associated issues - XXX, "Sexting", up late, using during school hours, etc. They aren't "Technically minded" so trying to look into "simple" options.

What I see available is SL and PC... but neither seems a silver bullet. Neither also seems to offer super-granular control (Which is, I guess, okay for non techies) nor all the options in one place (SL can't block Safari and PC doesn't seem to have hours of operations, that I can see).

For example, one specific question is "How do I block Instagram after 10?". Personally, I would block data on the phone via SL - but that doesn't block WIFI access to those services if I'm not mistaken.

So... my "edit" is more... how does one handle "Parental Controls" and are there any "all-in-one" options? If not, SL & PC it is... SL for texting/calling/cell-data during inopportune times... PC for more control of the iPhone and applications such as Safari - but not super-granular such as "Block Instagram after 10".

1 Answer 1


It depends what you want.

If you simply want to block apps, websites, and have (a little) control over data use, iPhone restrictions may be all you need.

By going into Settings > General > Restrictions > Websites, you can choose which sites you’d like to block from the phone. This works over both WiFi and Cellular.

You can also disable the App Store to prevent downloading of apps, or set an age limit on the apps downloaded.

Another thing you can do is configure your Cellular Data settings then lock the pane by selecting Don’t Allow Changes in Restrictions > Cellular Data Use

The main thing that AT&T parental controls would be good for is controlling what happens on your mobile data. In iOS controls, you cannot restrict phone numbers called, though AT&T can. Also, the AT&T app allows you to restrict cellular use during certain times of the day.

In conclusion:

Choose iOS restrictions if you want control over their activities on WiFi AND Cellular. Also choose this if you want to restrict app downloads. (free)

Choose SmartLimits if you want to have more control over your children’s activities over cellular. This is not limited to data, but also includes calls and texts. ($4.99/mo one line, $9.99/mo up to ten lines)

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