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A parental guide to apps that track phone usage for kids

Why would you need apps that track phone usage as a parent today? Smartphones have become the thing with kids nowadays.

The Gen Z and Alpha generation kids can’t live without phones. All life revolves around social media, metaverse, and virtual reality.

Enter digital parenting. As a parent to this generation, you must learn to control this screen time for your kids.

Not only is this important to help them also focus on other life activities, but you must do it to ensure sanity, proper growth, and development of your kids, and also to protect them from the harmful effects of life on the internet.

Remember, you need to protect your kids from cyber bullies, viruses and malware, dirty sites (think adult sites and gross content), and addictive content. It is for these reasons that phone tracking apps have been developed.

The question is, which apps are best for this? Let’s explore the top seven apps we have tested out.

The top 7 apps that track phone usage for kids

top 7 apps that track phone usage for kids

Qustodio App

Qustodio App is a parental control app that brings screen time tracking, call tracking, and SMS monitoring to your fingertips. With this app, you are also able to track the location of your child and have total control of your kid’s internet usage.

The beauty of this app is that any parent, regardless of their technical aptitude, can be able to use it to monitor their kids. You can also use it across devices, including tablets, phones, and PCs.

Unfortunately, the free version of this app has limits. This locks you out of being able to effectively monitor your kids unless you upgrade to the premium packages.

The costs to upgrade are also very steep. This makes it not a good choice for the budget-conscious parent or guardian.

Norton Family Premier

Norton Family Premier is a parental control software for smartphones. It is part of the Norton security products family which gives it an instant trust score.

The software allows parents to block websites as well as content topics for kids. This allows children to browse the web more safely.

Besides content blocking, this app also offers time management capabilities, location tracking, and social network monitoring, eventually sending an activity report to you. It allows you to have complete guidance to your kids’ online activities.

Unfortunately, the setup process for this software is not easy for the average parent. It is time-consuming and requires quite a high level of technical knowledge. It will test your patience.

Besides this, it also offers fewer customization options compared to other phone tracking apps in the same space. This translates to lesser flexibility, especially for the parent that requires unique control settings.

Family Link (from Google)

Family Link from Google is a family safety and parental control app by Google.

It allows a parent to control and adjust their kids’ device parameters so that they can effectively restrict content, set screen times, and approve or disapprove apps, among other monitoring solutions.

This app provides you with detailed reports about how your child is using their device so that you can make informed decisions. The app simply gives you a way to have parental oversight over your kids’ interaction with their gadgets even when you are away.

The best part is that Family Link by Google is free to use. Any parent can access it even on a budget. However, it also comes with its fair share of downsides.

To start with, this app is not compatible with some devices and operating systems. As a result, there’s a gap in its usability for those users who have a variety of technological setups.

Again, for it to be effectively used in a family setup, both the parents and the children have to have active Google accounts. This is a big hurdle for families that try to keep their online footprint to a minimum.

Further, some features on the Family Link app are unavailable for older children. Such features include prohibitions and screen time limits. This makes the app less useful for a family that has kids of different ages.

Screen Time

Screen Time

Screen Time app is a parental control app for both iOS and Android devices. It helps a parent or guardian to manage the time their children spend on their smartphones or tablets.

On top of controlling the time your child is on their device, it also comes with an innovative way to reward cooperation, thus promoting positive behavior in your child.

For the parent who wants to balance their child’s screen time while also encouraging other household activities, this is the perfect app. It builds on healthy digital habits with core family values.

Besides balancing screen time, it is also very easy to use for both the parent and the child. This also comes with easy user engagement allowing for thorough monitoring.

On the downside, the app lacks some important features that we see in other parental control apps. For instance, you will not get web filtering and app banning with this app. This limits you, the parent, from total control of your child’s device usage.

Moreso, the app has been reported to have some device synchronization issues, delayed updates, and other performance issues. This makes it quite unreliable.

OurPact App

OurPact App is a parental control app for both iOS and Android. Not only does it help limit screen time, but it also helps you track locations.

On top of this, it comes with very good scheduling tools that allow parents to set personalized plans for screen time, device usage, and app access.

On the downside, the app requires paid upgrades to access all its features. This limits you if you are looking for a free tracking solution.

The app also has shallow insights, analysis, and reporting compared to other apps in this space. You will, therefore, not get the insights you need to monitor your child’s behavior effectively.

Bark App

The Bark App is a parental control app for families that allows screen time management, website blocking, app blocking, and location tracking 24/7.

This app has some cool features including social media tracking, browser filtering, and text message analysis.

It also has a warning system that alerts a parent when there are potential threats or difficulties on your child’s device.

Some threats that it can detect include cyberbullying, online predators, and harmful content. This allows you to intervene and offer support in good time.

The Bark App is also cross-device, allowing usage on tablets, smartphones, and laptops. It is also compatible with multiple operating systems.

To top it all, this app has been picked for collaborations with non-profits, schools, and law enforcement agencies. This boosts its trust score and reputation as a great kids’ online safety app of choice.

However, just like other apps, it also has its drawbacks. Among them is that it requires you to have a subscription to use most of its features.

The setup process for this app is also a bit technical and tedious requiring some patience with a steep learning curve.

Lastly, its in-depth collection and analysis of data raise some privacy worries for some parents.

FlashGet Kids App

FlashGet Kids App

We saved the best for the last! The FlashGet Kids app helps you limit screen time for your kids while cultivating good habits and phone etiquette.

This app sets the standard for parental control. It has superior features that come in handy for digital parenting with a matching quality reputation.

For instance, the app has extensive monitoring, in real-time, that allows you to see which apps are on your child’s device, how much time your child is spending on each app, and how much time they are spending on their device.

The app is also very dependable. It gives you an easy way to monitor your child’s device, limit usage, restrict access to specific apps or websites, and even remotely monitor the phone settings of your child’s device.

Besides this, it comes with an easy-to-use friendly interface and end-to-end encryption for great security. This gives you and your child both security and privacy.

Your child’s digital footprint is also effectively protected limiting room for abuse by online predators, bullies, and hackers.

This app is also easy to use for any parent despite their technical capabilities. It has a simple intuitive design, with easily accessible feature settings, and a low learning curve to activate it effectively.

With FlashGet Kids, you will be able to restrict your child from accessing bad content, or even spending too much time on social media. You can filter what they can see while giving them a good and enjoyable device screen time.

Conclusion – and our top pick

As illustrated by the apps listed above, the choice of which app to go with for parental control can be a hard one. As a parent, you need to be sure that you get the right app to be able to monitor and guide your children across the digital landscape successfully.

The app you go for has to be easy enough to set up and use, complex enough to capture all the important data points to help you know exactly what your child is up to, and flexible enough to be operable across different devices and operating systems.

This is why our top pick from this list, is, without a doubt, FlashGet Kids App! Get this app and easily navigate the digital parenting space.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kidcaring, Chief Writer in FlashGet Kids.
She is dedicated to shaping parental control in the digital world. She is an experienced expert in the parenting industry and has engaged in reporting and writing different parental control apps. For the past five years, she has provided additional parental guides for the family and has contributed to changing parenting methods.

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FlashGet Kids
FlashGet Kids
parental control
Free download to experience all the features for child protection.
Free download

Parental Control

FlashGet Kids
FlashGet Kids
parental control
Free download
Free download to experience all the features for child protection.