Intro 2 – Device Restriction Modes & App Locking

August 12th, 2014

DinnerTime Plus provides different modes of device restriction and unique app blocking to yield the greatest restriction on your child’s device.

Let’s check out the various device restriction modes.

Device Restrictions

There are two types of modes, immediate blocking (Dinner Time, Take A Break) and scheduled blocking (Bed Time, Study Time).

Immediate blocking means that once the restriction is set, blocking will occur instantaneously, only allowing your child to use permitted apps. Your kid’s device must be connected to the Internet when you set the restriction.

First up, the Dinner Time restriction.


Dinner Time Restriction

The Dinner Time restriction is used for special occasions, like dinner time (duh!) and lunch time. You can set the Dinner Time restriction duration, by clicking the edit icon on the right.

There are three options to choose from, 30 minutes, 1 hour, and 2 hours. Click save and subsequently click the Dinner Time icon to activate the restriction!


Take A Break Restriction

Next we have Take A Break mode!

Take A Break can be simply activated by just clicking the Take A Break icon. It will now lock your children’s device for 24 hours! You can turn it off by clicking it again and disabling it at any time.

Note: If you forget to undo Take A Break, it will automatically disable itself after 24 hours.


Scheduled Breaks Restriction

Many parents expressed the need to curb their child’s mobile device usage during their study time or bed time. Often, kids are easily distracted with a constant stream of interruptions from SMS and social apps that derail their attention and focus on their homework or going to bed.

We have recently added a new feature in the DinnerTime Plus app called “Scheduled Breaks” which enables parents to set-up “Study Time” and “Bedtime” restrictions by weekdays, weekends or specific days (e.g. Monday, Wed, Friday). This new feature provides parents with the ability to predefine “Study Time” and “Bed Time” with detailed scheduling options so kids can better focus on their work when needed or get the proper amount of sleep. Parents with premium DinnerTime Plus account gets six extra Scheduled Breaks (i.e., create and customize up to 8 Scheduled Breaks).

To access this feature, please make sure the latest release of the DinnerTime Plus app (version 2.0) is installed on both parent’s and kid’s devices. DinnerTime Plus can be downloaded from Google Play.


Define “Study Time” and “Bed Time”

You can easily define a “Study Time” and “Bed Time” schedule from the DinnerTime Plus parental app. Just tap on the ‘Scheduled Breaks’ icon, then, to enable Study Time or Bed Time, tap the ‘OFF’ switch to turn it ‘ON’.


Customize Your Child’s  ‘Study Time’ or ‘Bed Time’ Schedule:

You can set repeat Study Time or Bed Time schedules by specific days, weekdays or weekend. Simply tap on ‘Study Time’ or ‘Bed Time’ to customize the schedule setting and tap ‘Done’ to save.


Define “Permitted Apps” for a Scheduled Break:

By default, all apps are blocked during a Scheduled Break (e.g., Bed Time or Study Time). However, there may be some apps that are necessary in certain situations like educational apps during Study Time or reading apps during Bed Time. Parents can whitelist different sets of important apps for each Scheduled Break by using the “Apps Permit” feature.

Want to Create Additional Customized Scheduled Breaks?

Parents may want to create additional Scheduled Breaks to allow for various other use cases – like scheduled breaks for play time when your child can go outside to get some exercise, breaks for family time so everyone can spend some quality time together without interruption, or even set a weekend bedtime schedule which is different from the weekday bedtime schedule.

With the premium DinnerTime Plus parental account, you can create six additional Scheduled Breaks to fit your child’s needs.


Create a Customized Warning Message for each Scheduled Break:

With the premium account, parents can provide customized warning messages during each of the Scheduled Breaks.

Advanced Study Time or Bed Time Customization using ‘Enhanced Block’ Feature

“Enhanced Blocking Feature” can be used by parents to prohibits the use of any app and completely block your child’s device from being used, with the restriction screen appearing in place of the normal lock screen. This is the highest level of restriction DinnerTime Plus has to offer.


App Locking

One of our most prominent features in Dinner Time Plus is the ability to block apps from being used. If you don’t want your kid to download apps from the Google Play Store, then you can lock that app. If you don’t want your child to be tampering with the settings, you can lock that as well!

With App Locking, you can lock apps to prevent use. If you don’t want to lock apps but still limit its usage (e.g Facebook, Snapchat), you can set daily time limits on those apps as well!

In the Monitoring menu, select the Apps icon to access all the apps on your child’s device.

Long hold an app to select the app that you want to block and start clicking other apps as well! Click ‘Lock’ at the top right to restrict these apps on your child’s device!

When your child tries to access a locked app, they are prevented from doing so and a notification will pop up on their device.

To disable restrictions, long hold an app, select the ones you want to enable, and click “Allow”.


Note: Depending on the device model and/or Android OS versions, there may be other interesting ways for the child to bypass existing restrictions. To prevent this from happening, we recommend parents use the ‘app locking’ feature to block access to the Android Setting menu. If you wish to prevent your child from downloading new applications or make in-app purchases, you can also use the ‘app locking’ feature to block access to the Google Play store.



App Time Limits

You can even set daily time limits to these apps by clicking each one individually! These daily time limits are cumulative starting from midnight, meaning that if you want to add an extra hour after your child has spent their, for example 1 hour daily time limit, you should set the daily time limit to 2 hours.