Mobile phone's application blocking system initially came about as a necessity to prevent children from accessing certain content. However, as each smartphone app accumulates a large amount of private information that more and more people want to protect from possible snoopers or thieves, so the password for access to certain apps also serves to protect your privacy.
How to block apps on Android?
In the security settings of your Android smartphone, there is an option to block or limit access to certain applications. To do this, go to Settings > Applications and when you enter each one, you'll see a Permissions tab in the list of options that allows you to set up access. However, this is a more time-consuming and rudimentary process than if you choose to install an application that makes it easier for you to manage your protected or blocked apps. In addition, these applications often offer many complementary options.
How to restrict apps on iPhone?
Your iPhone's own settings menu allows you to manage permissions or the blocking of certain applications. Go to Settings > Screen Time, and in the menu that appears, you'll have the option to control, limit and block apps or certain content. You can also share these settings with other devices, and if you look at the bottom of the screen, you'll see that it's possible to set family-specific settings that you can then share with other family members.
How to block apps from certain times on Android & iPhone?
Go into your phone's Settings > Digital Wellbeing & parental controls. There should be a chart with the apps that you can limit. Select the app that want to reduce access to and then Set timer.
You can restrict access to specific apps for a chosen amount of time. Go to Settings > Screen Time and then turn on screen time. You can then assign App Limits. Select the app category that you want to limit, and find the specific app, and you can determine how long you can spend on that app.
What are some apps that restrict access?
The most versatile - AppLock
AppLock is one of the most downloaded blocking applications due to the versatility and the great amount of functions it offers you. Among them:
- Private access to certain apps with password, unlocking pattern or fingerprints. This will prevent anyone from using your phone from accessing information in your locked apps and it also acts as a parental control tool.
- Temporarily blocks apps to avoid getting distracted in your work time, for example. You can choose the time slot in which it will remain locked, it can be on a one-time basis, or you can set it to be a routine lock that's activated every day at specific time.
- File vaults where you can password-protect photos, videos, conversations or other information you want to protect.
- Blocks unwanted calls or messages.
- Block Google Play Store services to prevent anyone from downloading unwanted apps to your phone.
AppLock is available in English and 44 other languages, and you can download AppLock for Android on the Google PlayStore.
The safest one: Perfect AppLock
Perfect AppLock is designed in a very intuitive way and has really useful and ingenious details.
How does it work? In its main menu, you will find a list of all the apps on your phone and with simple icons. You can temporarily block the app or give it a password, but also access other more original tools such as blocking the automatic screen rotation for each app or activating a screen filter for a specific application to prevent people nearby from spying on your screen, while you read a message.
In addition to these original functions, a strength of Perfect AppLock is its advanced security system. It will warn you if someone tries to circumvent one of your passwords and, in case of three or more wrong unlocking attempts, the WatchDog service will be activated taking a picture with the front camera of the person who is trying to circumvent your privacy.
The most secure: 1Password
1Password is an application initially created to serve as secure password storage. However, its advanced privacy system has been expanded to also offer one of the best services for blocking apps for iOS.
With its intuitive interface, you can set one-time or long-lasting locks, and in addition to the password, pattern and fingerprint, it allows you to set up unlocking with Face ID.
Since 1Password also works as a password safe, it allows you to create even more security with a double authentication code. And if your security is compromised you will be notified. You can configure your locks and passwords to work in sync across all your devices.
It should be noted that this is one of the most widely used password storage services because it allows them to be shared with a group in the case of collective accounts for streaming services, for example.
You can download 1Password for iOS here.
The most private: iSafe Pro
iSafe Pro is one of the most advanced applications for protecting files and apps on your phone. However, it's not free. It only costs 1 euro and we think its services are worth the investment.
This application allows you to group your protected files by category, and you can even hide password-protected apps from your phone's home menu. Only you, with a special code, will be able to access your confidential directory where the protected applications are. And you can add a fake password to place in case someone presses you to show them what you're hiding in iSafe. After this first unlocking, only what you've chosen will be visible.
You can download iSafe here for iOS.