TALKING APPS | Anatomy of Children Friendly Apps
Talking Apps

Anatomy of Children Friendly Apps

We can often ask ourselves – is this particular app children friendly? Which apps can we call so? One could say that something funny – characters, plot, sounds – is enough. However probably there is more to it. To be called so, the app must be well thought through, possible issues awaiting the kids and parents must be considered and resolved. Today we will talk about these aspects, how they can be approached and how this may affect your decision of buying the app.

Convenient navigation

Have you ever seen an app for children with lots of configuration options? Even though kids learn to use the iPhone in an instance, the setup of the app must be easy. Intuitive navigation and menu settings always stand out and make playing a breeze. Lots of options is not always an optimal decision even if it sounds so. You want to start the app and begin playing around as fast as possible. Therefore any settings that you must set should be intuitive and have good defaults.


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Advertizing in apps for kids

It is certain that developers want to make some money from their apps. A sure-fire strategy is to offer a free app with ads in it. If it is a game for kids, they will certainly click around and open the links with ads also. If one does not like it, there is another choice of buying paid apps. This way you reduce the chances of your kids trapped into clicking the ads. From my standpoint I could only justify putting ads into free apps and would expect not to have them in the purchased ones. However even in this case there is no guarantee that you will escape the ads completely – there are no rules in iTunes forcing the developer to remove ads or pop-ups in the paid apps. So you should check this aspect carefully before buying the app.

Of course the developers want to earn more or to let you know about their other apps. And that is even good in most of the cases. It is important to avoid the apps making this too obtrusive. In a really children-friendly apps any pop-ups or ads should not come up in the middle of the game. It is often the case however and children are bound to click on them. To protect your kids and yourself I would encourage you to password protect any purchases on iTunes from your devices. If you give your iPhone to kids it will surely minimize the risks of unwanted purchases.

What’s inside?

The last thing we are going to talk about is the content of the app. If the content is educational, enchasing some skills of the child, helping him or her to learn more that is only good. But what about other types of games? Something that is just funny and silly. Are these time killer apps really children friendly? They make your children smile. Therefore I would say we need them sometimes as well.

However there are certain apps to be cautious about. Anything that has elements of violence – you have to kill someone, destroy something, beat someone else – should at least raise the exclamation mark for the parents. You should review such games carefully before deciding if you want to give them to your kids. These apps can easily be appealing to the children. Even some very popular games are of this kind. Don’t forget that the ones playing them are your kids. So it is your decision to allow it or not.

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