updated 08:29 pm EDT, Fri August 2, 2013
Children under 13 can have accounts only through recognized schools
In an effort to further promote and support the iPad for students, the company is bending a rule that children under 13 can't have Apple ID accounts and allowing schools and "approved educational institutions" to create accounts for students under the age limit. Children between 13 and 18 are now requested to review the terms and conditions with parents or guardians when creating an account. In order for schools to implement Apple IDs for kids under 13, the institution must obtain the students' parent's consent.
The iPad's burgeoning success as a replacement for both textbooks and traditional school PCs -- including Apple's latest deal to supply iPads for all 640,000 K-12 students in the Los Angeles Unified school district over the next two years -- likely played a role in the rule change, MacWorld reports. Parents and school administrators alike will have to carefully monitor accounts to prevent "accidental" in-app purchases and other abuses for student accounts.
The LA Unified deal alone will see the district spend over $430 million to equip students and teachers with iPads, which are coming pre-loaded with textbooks and other educational apps. The district believes it will save substantial sums of money over the existing costs of physical textbooks, traditional notebook or desktop computers and support staff.