|Photo: Seth Wenig, Associated Press|
by Amy Graff, SFGATE, 20 April 2017
American businessman Bill Gates' Microsoft designed some of the world's most exciting technology, but he put strict limits on his own children from using it.
Bill Gates is a visionary who co-founded one of the world's best-known tech companies that made him the richest man in the world.
Gates led the world into the digital world, making computers accessible to everyday people with his Microsoft PC software.
You would think his kids would have been some of the first students at school to show up with cell phones.
Not so. Gates and his wife Melinda banned their three children from owning cell phones until age 14, even though their kids often protested and said their friends all owned them.
Any modern-day parent knows 14 is on the older end of cell-phone ownership.
The average child is getting his first phone at age 10, according to 2016 research by Influence Central. That's down from 12 in 2016.
Once the Gates kids — Jennifer is now 20, Rory, 17, and Phoebe, 14 — got their first phones, the parents set strict limits on usage, banning mobiles from the dinner table.
"We often set a time after which there is no screen time and in their case that helps them get to sleep at a reasonable hour," Gates told The Mirror.
Gates isn't the first tech titan to limit his kids' technology use.
In an article in the Sunday New York Times on September 14, 2014, reporter Nick Bilton says he once asked Jobs "So, your kids must love the iPad?"
Jobs response: "They haven't used it. We limit how much technology our kids use at home."