Are you looking for information about offers, devices or your account?

Please choose your local Vodafone website

How one family protects their children online - Oliver and Mabel

3 minute read
The pressure for the iPhone is building.

Mabel (aged 9)

I don’t live with my dad all the time, only on Wednesdays and weekends. When we see each other, we like to spend time playing on the Wii, especially making ourselves look stupid on Just Dance. I’ve also got a DS but I don’t play with that as much.

I’m always reading on my Kindle and I love it because wherever I go I can carry about loads of books. I love reading and the Kindle makes it easier.

On a Saturday, when I’m with my dad, we like to watch films via Netflix and LOVEFiLM on the Xbox… though my dad usually chooses the rubbish ones.

When we’re not together, I miss him, so we Skype and talk most days, but what I really want is for us both to have iPhones so we could use FaceTime, and I could use this with my mum as well because she’s got one already. I will keep nagging my mum and dad for an iPhone but I think I might have to start saving up for one.


It’s really important to me that when Mabel isn’t with my partner and me we still talk regularly – this is one of Mabel’s main arguments as to why she should have a mobile, specifically an iPhone, so she can contact me when she wants and vice versa.

There are ongoing discussions between me and Mabel’s mum about the age you should have your first mobile. It seems that Mabel’s 10th birthday in a few months time seems like a sensible point, although Mabel has made it quite clear that having my HTC Desire handed down to her is not an option!

I have to admit, I also have a secret longing for an iPhone and FaceTime seems like a good excuse to get one. My partner and I are expecting a baby and Mabel has already said that she wants to be able to see her brother every day and if she had her own phone she could do this!

We use Skype on a regular basis but neither of us can really get used to the time delay and we usually end up talking over each other. It would be good if Mabel could get in touch with me by herself whenever she wanted to. As staying in touch with her is really important to me, the pressure for the iPhone is building…

When we spend our time together, and Mabel hasn’t got her head stuck in her Kindle, then it’s the Wii that she loves. I have to leave my dignity at the door when Just Dance makes an appearance.

Being able to share this sort of thing when we’re together is really important for us. I’ve been trying to persuade Mabel that what she really wants is Kinect for the Xbox but there is something about the Wii that really appeals to her.

"My main concern is that they’ll come across sexual content on the Web. Eva searches online when she’s doing her homework and I worry that something inappropriate will come up on her screen – perhaps if she mis-spells a word in the search box."

Danielle also checks the age ratings on any apps before downloading them and takes a look at the app herself before letting her son or daughter use it. She has also disabled in-app purchases so that there won’t be any costly mistakes.

“I always talk to them about what they do on the iPad and computer and I definitely feel more in control knowing I’ve also put these tools in place,” she explains. “They weren’t too difficult to set up. There’s no way I would let them go online without them.”

  • Fintech
  • Products
  • Technology

More stories

No results found