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Special Words - Update for iPad & iPhone

An updated version of Special Words for iPad and iPhone is now available on the App Store. This is a free update if you already have the app:

Child Safety Gate

This version introduces a safety gate (also called a parental lock). Apple is asking developers to add these to apps for children. You will see the gate whenever you tap the action button in the Word List. It asks you to solve an arithmetic problem, to prove you are a grown up! If you prefer not to have a gate, you can turn it off in the settings.

Large Text

This is a new setting, to increase the size of the text on the word cards by 50%. We think it will be particularly helpful for children with visual impairment, as several of you have requested something like this.

Cards Per Page

This setting, which already offered you a choice of 1, 2, 3 or 4 cards to match on each page, now allows you to increase that to 6 or 8. Try this if you think 4 cards isn't sufficiently challenging!

Newer Hardware and Software

We've optimised this version for iOS 11 and for the 10.5 inch iPad Pro. We still support iOS 7 to 10, but this version cannot be installed on iOS 6 (now more than 5 years old). If you have an iPad 2 or later, running iOS 6, you can update it to iOS 9 or later.

Did you know?

There are several tools available to limit what your child can do in Special Words, and generally on your iPad or iPhone:

  • Pressing and hold the Padlock at the top of an activity for 3 seconds will prevent leaving that activity.
  • Turning off Enable Editing in the app's settings will prevent modification of word list and profiles (so things can't be deleted).
  • You have to open the Child Safety Gate before you can manage profiles, import or export word lists, visit our website, or completely reset the app.
  • By using Guided Access, you can lock the iPad into any app, so you cannot leave the app by tapping the Home button.
  • If you enable Restrictions in the iPad's settings, you can prevent apps being deleted, in-app purchases being made, and much more!