How to block apps on my iPhone

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    If you're wondering how to block apps on your iPhone, this article explains the most effective methods for restricting apps and web content.

    How to block apps on my iPhone

    Daily life for many adults and children includes an abundance of screen time. Specific apps on the iPhone can cause significant distractions, and parents may worry about children accidentally accessing inappropriate content.
    If you are concerned about the apps your child has access to, and are wondering how to block apps on your iPhone, Apple offers functionality to set app restrictions and screen time limits.
    Read on to learn how to block apps on your or your child’s iPhone.

    You can use iPhone restrictions

    People addicted to their iPhones can spend several hours per day interacting with them. One of the most common causes of addiction is social media. Social networking sites like Snapchat and TikTok are among the most addictive and can have your child entertained for hours on end.
    Luckily, you can enable restrictions in the iOS native settings to alleviate this issue.

    Content and privacy restrictions

    It’s easy for your child to access all kinds of content and apps. Luckily, Apple is aware of the effect mobile phones can have on children and offers several parental control options to protect them from adult content.
    By using the Screen Time feature via Content & Privacy Restrictions, you can protect them by blocking specific apps or setting a time limit.
    First, you need to enable Content & Privacy Restrictions, then set up your passcode. Here’s how to do so on your iPhone or iPad with iOS 12 and later installed:

    1. On the home screen, go to Settings, then choose Screen Time.
    2. Either tap Turn on Screen Time twice, or tap on it once, then Continue.
    3. Select This is My Child’s [Device].
    4. To prevent your child from changing your settings, scroll down and choose Use Screen Time Passcode to set up a passcode. Use a different passcode from the one you use to unlock your device.
    5. Re-enter the passcode to confirm.
    6. Enter your Apple ID and password.
    7. On the Screen Time screen, tap Content & Privacy Restrictions, then enter your passcode if asked.
    8. Enable the Content & Privacy Restrictions option.

    The passcode lock method

    With Content & Privacy Restrictions enabled and your passcode set, you can prevent explicit content and other apps you don’t allow from being shown on the app.
    To lock apps using app limits, follow these steps:

    1. Go to the Settings app on the home screen, then select Screen Time.
    2. Press App Limits, then choose Add Limit.
    3. Select the category you want. For instance, most social apps are in the Social or Entertainment categories.
    4. Press on the app you want to limit, then tap Next.
    5. Use the slider to enter the time limit, then tap Add.
    6. Enable the Block at End of Limit option. Your settings are saved automatically.
    7. Once you’re done, exit Screen Time.

    Once the time limit you’ve set on the app runs out, a pop-up will display that the limit has been reached. The user will need to enter the Screen Time passcode to continue using the app.
    There will be an option to increase the time. However, the Screen Time passcode is required to do that also.

    Block app downloads

    Apple also allows you to place restrictions on being able to install or delete apps and from making in-app store purchases. Follow these steps to block iTunes & App Store downloads or purchases:

    1. From the home screen, go to Settings, then select Screen Time.
    2. Choose Content & Privacy Restrictions and enter your passcode if prompted.
    3. Select iTunes & App Store Purchases.
    4. Choose an option under Store Purchases & Re-Downloads, then set it to Don’t Allow.

    Prevent Web Content

    The iPhone and iPad can automatically filter web content to restrict access to adult content via Safari and other apps. In addition, you can add specific websites to an allowed or blocked list and limit access to permitted websites by following these steps:

    1. Access the Settings app, then Screen Time.
    2. Press Content & Privacy Restrictions, then enter your Screen Time passcode.
    3. Select “Content Restrictions,” then Web Content.
    4. Under Web Content, choose “Unrestricted,” “Limit Adult Websites,” or “Allowed Websites.”

    Schedule Downtime

    Many apps on your iPhone required for work, play, and everything in between may keep you constantly tied to your phone. Apple allows iOS users to arrange a “Time Out” by setting a period to block apps and notifications.
    Follow these steps to schedule your downtime:

    1. Open “Settings,” then Screen Time.
    2. Enable “Turn on Screen Time.”
    3. Choose Downtime, then enable Downtime.
    4. Choose Every Day or Customize Days, then enter the start and end times.

    Speechify—The app you won’t want to block

    Speechify is an ideal app and will likely join your allowed apps list. It will encourage and enhance focus instead of causing distractions from social media apps. You can use Speechify to significantly reduce your and your child’s screen time by listening to screen text instead of reading it. Speechify uses AI to convert text into speech and OCR technology to convert images of text into speech. It’s designed to be effective for studying as your child is encouraged to focus by listening.
    Speechify is the No.1 App Store app for screen reading. It is available as a Chrome browser extension to convert all in-browser text to audio and can be installed on your iPhone, other iOS devices, Android, Mac, and Windows.
    Try Speechify for free to discover how useful it is in limiting distractions.

    FAQ

    How do I block a specific app?

    You can block specific apps on your iPhone using the “Screen Time” feature and set up a different passcode to set time limits on specific apps.

    Is it possible to block an app from App Store?

    Yes, from the Content & Privacy Restrictions option, you can prevent app installation and in-app purchases from the App Store.

    What is the difference between blocking and uninstalling an app?

    Blocking an app means the app remains on your device, but access is restricted. Uninstalling an app will remove it from your device.

    Cliff Weitzman

    Cliff Weitzman

    Cliff Weitzman is a dyslexia advocate and the CEO and founder of Speechify, the #1 text-to-speech app in the world, totaling over 100,000 5-star reviews and ranking first place in the App Store for the News & Magazines category. In 2017, Weitzman was named to the Forbes 30 under 30 list for his work making the internet more accessible to people with learning disabilities. Cliff Weitzman has been featured in EdSurge, Inc., PC Mag, Entrepreneur, Mashable, among other leading outlets.

    Dyslexia & Accessibility Advocate, CEO/Founder of Speechify Dyslexia & Accessibility Advocate, CEO/Founder of Speechify

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