Sonia Livingstone, professor of social psychology at the London School of Economics, said it was good to hear the call from the investors.
She added there needed to be one voice between device manufacturers, social media companies and internet service providers (ISPs) on the issue of smartphone use.
"For a long time the concern has been to not do anything that would impact a friction-free experience," Prof Livingstone told the BBC.
"Everyone would like to have a well balanced life, but the way that devices are designed currently causes a lot of conflict with parents."
She called on Apple and other device manufacturers to have all notifications on smartphones switched off by default and for the creation of occasional reminders that urged youngsters to take a break from their phone after long periods of use.
Prof Livingstone, who also runs a parenting blog, did question the use of the term "addiction" for those who spend a long time using a smartphone, however.
"Everyone will agree that there is excessive use and even obsession with smartphones, but I don't believe it's addiction," she said.
Apple has not yet responded to requests for comment.