For once, it's not just the Entertainment Software Association that wants a ratings system for the iPhone and the App Store. Both developers and gamers are equally keen for an age rating system so more mature games could become available, and not subject to Apple's policy widely regarded as strict and sectarian.
Speaking to Kotaku, CEO of the Entrainment Software Association (ESA) Michael Gallagher said: "We've been down this road before, the Entertainment Software industry, we know how this goes and it's wise for Apple to make steps in that direction so that this is addressed up front and there is an environment that is hospitable to children and families."
However, it seems that the ESA might not have done its research. Although details on exactly how it'll work aren't entirely clear at this point, Apple has included parental controls in the new 3.0 software update coming on June 17th.
At the WWDC, Apple said TV and movie rentals would soon be available direct to the iPhone and iPod touch, which is presumably a significant factor in its decision to apply an age rating system.
This system will extend throughout iTunes and the App Store including games and applications so it would seem that Apple is way ahead of the ESA on this one.
Of course, despite a general reluctance to admit it, the onus remains on parents to ensure their children's iPhone content is suitable, as publishers and governing bodies can do little more than encourage the proper use of a system's parental controls. But that's no different to the console gaming or film industries.
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