App Name: Qustodio Parental Control
Market: Google Play
Today we have a guest app review. Mobile technology is very important but as a parent we need to make sure that we help protect our kids. Well Qustodio Parent Control is an app for Android and iOS that helps you manage/monitor how your kids use their mobile devices.
How Qustodio Works
The app is actually available for both Android and iOS phones. But since I’ve always loved Android I decided to install it in all of our family’s Androids first.The first thing I did was download the app through from Qustodio.com. It’s free of cost. You can also download it directly by searching for Qustodio in Google Play here.
The set up of the app was kind of reminiscent to the PS1 games I played. Very easy – avatar-driven. From there, I was able to sign up as a new user and then set up my online dashboard. By then, I figured that I actually had to install the app for each of my child’s phones too. So I did and then set them up to my dashboard. Voila! They were all under my watch even without them knowing it. (There is an option to hide Qustodio in the installation process of a device if you want to.)
What I Was Able to Do with The App
I was able to do a lot of things with the app, really. If you want to know the truth, I felt I was somewhat invading the privacy of my children. But what can I say? Parents do need to know what’s going on. My kids are still quite young. Billy is 11, Joe is 14 and little Betty is still going 10. I basically have to know how responsible they are as netizens before I set them free from my eyeing reins.
One of the first things I made sure to do was block all porn sites. It didn’t take much to do that, in fact Qustodio does that automatically once you install it without you having to do anything. The dashboard has this slick feature of blocking sites by category and you know how the internet works. While there’s a plethora of data out there, most of it falls in to certain categories that are easy to classify as good and bad for kids. As parents it’s not so difficult to decide to block: Gambling, Porn, Filesharing were some categories on my list. The app alarmed me every site visit they try to attempt.
Qustodio also has an advanced social monitoring feature that I also enabled. One of the reasons I did this, too, was the fact that I heard the two boys talking about girls last weekend. And you know how well that ends, right? They end up looking for an outlet to throw those affinities out. I was able to get a view of the main contacts my child was chatting with via phone, sms and social networks.
Another thing I did was limit my children’s time of the Facebook app. Why was this necessary? I know for a fact that my kids have these projects going on now that school is going at its highs. However, I always thought that two hours is more than enough to settle all their school businesses. Anything that goes beyond that time frame is plain unnecessary. At least they get to have full access on Saturdays. Sort of my treat for them.
Another nice feature is that you don’t have to always login to Qustodio from the web to know what’s going on with your kids. Qustodio is set up to either send you daily or weekly reports depending on your preferences that give you an idea of the internet and device activity for each child.
What the Premium Will Do
Qustodio is free for up to a limited number of kids and devices, but there’s actually a premium subscription for Qustodio too. Considering my whole experience with it, I am willing to spend for those features. The premium version allows me to track my kids location on a virtual map. It also gets you full access to location tracking and Calls and SMS monitoring. The best part of it all is that I would be able to know the text messages and calls that are coming in and out of my children’s phones. Not that I am against their personal relationships. I just need to know that they are playing life the safe way and that they are always, well, in good terms with people. The last feature that Premium does really well is the opportunity to set time limits for individual applications, including android app controls. If as a parent you are concerned about your young children using Snapchat, Tinder or even Facebook, you can block those apps.
If you are a parent and you want to ensure your kids’ safety, I would highly recommend the Qustodio software. It’s a platform, so you can install it on all your family’s devices: Windows PCs, Mac, Kindle, iOS and Android and monitor and manage from any web browser. Find out more about this great parental control software here.