Help your child set up an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch

Set up your child's iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, so they can participate in Family Sharing, keep their device secure, and more. You can also customize the device's settings, so you know what features they're using.

iPhone showing video game

When you get your child a new iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, you can set it up with Touch ID, an Apple ID, Family Sharing, Find My iPhone, Find My Friends, and restrictions. Even if you already set up the device, you can check its settings and set up features like Family Sharing. See our tips below. 

Set up Touch ID and a passcode

Set up Touch ID, so that you can unlock the device with the touch of a finger. You can enroll up to five fingerprints, so add your child's prints and your own. 

You can also set a six-digit passcode to help protect their data. If you'd like a four-digit passcode or a custom passcode, tap Passcode Options. Remind your child not to share their passcode.

Check your child's Apple ID

An Apple ID is the account that you use to access Apple services like the App Store, iTunes, Apple Music, iCloud, iMessage, FaceTime, and more. Everyone should have their own Apple ID, so make sure that your child signs in with their Apple ID. Don’t share your Apple ID with your child. If your child uses your Apple ID, you might have issues such as getting each other's iMessages. Learn how to make sure that everyone in your family uses their own Apple ID.

Then go to your child's Apple ID account page to make sure that their information is correct. Check their birthday, since it needs to be correct for features like Family Sharing.

Set up Family Sharing

With Family Sharing, you can share each other’s App Store, iTunes, and Apple Books purchases, an Apple Music Family Subscription, iCloud storage, and more, without sharing an account. And when you turn on purchase sharing, any purchases initiated by your family are billed to your account.

You can also turn on Ask to Buy for your child. When they initiate a purchase, an alert is sent to you, the family organizer, so you can review the download and approve or decline it right from your device. This applies to both purchases and free downloads.

Turn on Find My iPhone
Find My iPhone helps you find your child's device if it’s ever lost or stolen and helps protect it. Just sign in to iCloud.com or Find My iPhone with their Apple ID to see the missing device.

With Family Sharing, any family member can help find another member’s device.

Learn how to set up Find My iPhone.
 

Set up Find My Friends
Find My Friends lets you locate your family members from your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch or iCloud.com. Just open the app, add your child as a friend, then ask them to accept the invite.

With Family Sharing, family members can share their location with each other automatically.

Learn how to set up Find My Friends.
 

Set Content & Privacy Restrictions for your child

With Screen Time on iOS 12, you can use Content & Privacy Restrictions to block or limit specific apps and features on your child's iPhone. Just go to Settings > Screen Time > Continue, then choose This is My iPhone or This is My Child's iPhone.

If it's your child's device, you can create settings right on their device or you can use Family Sharing to configure your child’s device from your own iPhone or iPad. After you set up your child’s device, you can also use Family Sharing to view reports and adjust settings any time, right from your own device.

With Screen Time you can also create a dedicated passcode to secure settings, so only you can extend time or make changes.

Make sure to choose a passcode that's different from the passcode you use to unlock your device. If you can't remember a restrictions passcode that you set on a previous version of iOS, or you forgot your Screen Time passcode, you need to erase your device, then set it up as a new device to remove the passcode. Restoring your device from a backup won't remove your passcode.

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