The Top Apps for Monitoring Your Child’s Phone

Parental controls allow parents to set limitations on their children’s app access and overall phone usage, and they serve as “training wheels” for kids and teenagers to learn good computer habits. We spent over 30 hours regulating our kids’ daily screen time using seven parental-control applications on both iOS and Android devices, and we found that Apple Screen Time is best for iOS households, while Google Family Link is best for Android households with kids under 13. Qustodio is the best choice for Android families with children aged 13 and up.

Screen Time is a set of free parental controls introduced in iOS 12, the most recent version of the iPhone’s operating system. It allows parents to remotely monitor their child’s iPhone or iPad, set a daily limit on how much time they spend on specific apps, categories of apps, or the phone in general, and automatically lock the phone when they go to bed. Because Apple has such tight control over its software and hardware, no other app gives you as much insight into and control over it as this one does.

Google Family Link is a free app that allows parents to control their child’s Android phone from their own iPhone or Android device. Parents can limit how much time their child spends on the phone with a single tap.

They can set the phone to be unreachable at night and restrict their youngster from using the phone. Google Family Link, on the other hand, is just for kids under the age of thirteen. Children can create their own Google account and opt out of monitoring once they reach this age. While Google Family Link allows parents to completely ban the use of individual apps, it does not allow them to set time limits for those apps. If you need that functionality, or if you want to set up parental restrictions for your children aged 13 and up, Qustodio is a good option.