If you are a parent, then you must be worried about your child’s safety. You want to make sure that your child is safe and secure at all times, so you can rest easy.
So, how do you make sure that your child is safe and secure? Well, there are many ways to keep them safe and secure. One way would be by installing an app on their phone that will keep them from accessing any inappropriate content or websites.
There are many apps available today that can help you keep track of what your children are doing online. These apps will allow you to monitor their activity on their phones and computers so that they don’t get into trouble.
Right here on Quyasoft you are privy to a litany of relevant information on Which app is good for parental control, How to choose the best parental control app for you, How we test and rate the best parental control apps and so much more. Take out time to surf through our catalog for more information on related topics. You don’t want to miss this!
Parental controls can be a great way to keep your kids safe. But it can also be a pain to figure out which parental control app is the best for you and your family.
There are several factors to consider when choosing a parental control app. The first thing to think about is what kind of device you want to use it on—a computer, phone or tablet? The second thing to think about is how much money you want to spend on the app. Another factor is whether or not you want an app that will let you block websites or just monitor what your child is doing online.
If you have an iPhone or iPad, we recommend [app name]. It’s very easy to set up and use, and it costs only $5 per month (with no contract). You can use [app name] on multiple devices at once, so if you have more than one child who uses your iPad or iPhone, it will still work great for both of them!
How to choose the best parental control app for you
What you need from a parental control app mainly depends on the age of your children. If you’re the parent of a child under 12, you absolutely need the ability to block objectionable websites, but you might also want to consider an app that’s available on Amazon’s Fire tablets.
If you have teenagers though, you might want to let them look at some objectionable things online, but only if you’re aware of it. You may also want to see who your teens are chatting with online in messaging apps as well as where they are late on a Friday night. At the same time, you may also want to consider a service that monitors your kids’ Windows and Mac devices in addition to their smartphones.
The best parental control apps offer, at a minimum, a website filter, location tracking, screen-time limits with a scheduler and an app blocker that at least works on Android.
Other useful extra features include geofencing which alerts you if a child’s phone leaves a designated ‘safe’ area like their school or a relative’s house. Most of these apps allow you to monitor your child’s phone from a web interface on your computer as well as from your own smartphone.
A couple of these apps also let you block and log the calls and text messages a child makes and receives, and even read a child’s text messages. However, they require extra steps to do so. Still though, none of the best parental control apps let you listen in on a call, as doing so is illegal.
See the chart below for what each parental control apps offers.
Feature comparison chart
|Feature (bold = free)||ESET Parental Control for Android||Google Family Link||Kaspersky Safe Kids||MMGuardian||Net Nanny||Norton Family||OurPact||Qustodio||Screen Time|
|Price||Free to $30/year||Free||Free to $15/year||Up to $70/year||Free to $90/year||$50/year||Free to $84/year||Free to $138/year||Free to $40/year|
|Number of devices||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||1 to 5||1 to 20||Unlimited||1 to 20||1 to 15||1 to 5|
|Platforms||Android||Android||Android, iOS, Windows, Mac||Android, iOS||Android, iOS, Kindle Fire, Windows||Android, iOS, Windows||Android, iOS||Android, iOS, Kindle Fire, Windows, Mac, Chrome OS||Android, iOS|
|Web portal for parents||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Call logging||None||None||None||None||None||None||None||Android only||None|
|Text logging||None||None||None||Yes||None||None||None||Android only||None|
|Text content||None||None||None||Yes||None||None||None||Android only||None|
|Call blocking||None||None||None||Android only||None||None||None||Android only||None|
|Text blocking||None||None||None||Android only||None||None||None||Android only||None|
|Geofencing||Yes||None||Yes||None||None||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes, extra fee|
|Location tracking||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes, extra fee|
|Location history||Yes||Yes||None||Android only||Yes||Yes||None||Yes||Yes, extra fee|
|Web filter||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Extra fee, Android only|
|Time limits||Yes||Yes||Yes||Android only||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Scheduling||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes (limited on iOS)||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|App management||Yes||Yes||Yes (limited on iOS)||Android only||Yes (limited on iOS)||Android only||Yes||Yes||Yes, Android only|
|App blocker||Yes||Yes||Yes (limited on iOS)||Yes (limited on iOS)||Yes||Android only||Yes||Yes||Android only|
How we test and rate the best parental control apps
We focused on parental control apps that emphasize setting up filters and limits proactively before your child uses a smartphone rather than merely tracking activities after the fact. In our extensive testing, we took the following criteria into account.
Price: What is the cost of the service and how many children/devices are covered?
Installation: How easy is it to install and configure the app across each device?
App management: What level of control does the app provide when it comes to monitoring, blocking or restriction of smartphone usage? Does the app let you see all of the other apps on the child’s device/
Filtering: What kind of filtering tools does each app offer? How effectively does the app filter out content that you deem inappropriate?
Time management: What kinds of tools does the app provide for restricting screen time?
Texting and messaging management: Does the app let you see the content of your child’s text messages? Are you able to create rules or block specific contact? Are you notified of new contacts? Does the control extend beyond the built-in messaging apps or can you block messaging apps altogether?
Location tracking: Does the app let you find your child in an emergency? Does it log their previous locations? Does the app let you create geofenced areas?
Our most recent round of testing was done on a Lenovo Yoga C940 running Windows 10, a Google Pixel 4XL running Android 11, and an iPhone 12 running iOS 14.2.
We tested each app on every supported platform twice, from installation to uninstalling it. We typically monitored activity from the Lenovo Yoga C940 but for apps that offered control from a smartphone, we tested those features from an iPhone.
The best Android parental control apps are still considerably more robust than their iOS counterparts in most cases, with only OurPact offering feature parity to the other apps we tested.
We note areas in which there are discrepancies between the functionality offered on each platform, but we haven’t provided distinct ratings and reviews for the iOS or Android version of each app.
Regarding call and text monitoring, both Apple and Google have made it nearly impossible for any app to do so. Qustodio gets around this by offering a special version of the Android app that users can sideload; MMGuardian replaces the standard SMS app with its own on Android, and uses PCs or Macs to comb through phone backups on iOS.
Parenting Tips for Better Phone Use
Sometimes, our failures as parents are reflected by our kids. Parental control apps will not completely protect our kids from all the dangers of having a phone. We need to take extra measures to teach kids how to put their phones to good use. Some include;
Communicate With Children About Internet Dangers
You can be your child’s counselor. Make them understand that the internet is not a big happy place. It contains scammers, the dark web, and other unpleasant tries. When communicating with them you need to be as gentle as you can be. Allow them to see you as a friend. This way, they get to buy your idea and accept it.
Have Family Rules In Place About Phone Use
Sometimes, talking to them about internet dangers attached to owning a phone is not enough. You need to have rules put in place about phone use. The rule should involve when eating (no phones), when alone (restricted browsing and downloading), etc.
Spend Quality Time With Your Child
Your kids will not feel obligated to glue their eyes and fingers to the phone if you created time for them. Hence, you need to spend quality time with them. When they are relaxed enough, they would not remember their android cell phone, unless to take pictures of the moment.
Which app is good for parental control
1. Qustodio Parental Control – The best protection money can buy
Parental control suites have come a long way since their early days, and nowhere is that evolution of features and functionality more apparent than in Qustodio. Qustodio is a suite of apps that lets you install parental controls on Windows, OSX, Android, iOS, and Kindle, offering one of the most comprehensive lists of features we’ve seen on a service to date.
To put it bluntly: there isn’t a single aspect of the parental control experience that Qustodio isn’t objectively the best at (save for maybe a little iOS magic that uKnowKids pulls off later on down this list). Aside from that though whether it’s getting the program set up, the extensive number of filters you can apply to your children’s browsing habits depending on their age, or even just the overall look and feel – Qustodio knocks every last ball clean out of the park.
If we had to fault Qustodio for anything (and believe us, we’re really grasping at straws to find anything wrong with the service here), it would be the inability for kids to “request access” when they run up against a site that was blocked for the wrong reason. This feature generally makes it easier for parents to greenlight their kids on the go, especially if the app includes some form of mobile notification option on top of the regular access request service. Without it, kids may have to wait several hours before you get around to unblocking that specific domain manually through the Qustodio dashboard.
Other than that minor complaint though, Qustodio outshines every other parental control suite in its class, proving that even if you’re not a big name like Norton or Kaspersky doesn’t mean you still can’t do it bigger, better, leaner and meaner than the rest of them.
2. Kaspersky Safe Kids – Best user experience
Kaspersky was and continues to be one of the best antivirus software providers on the internet today, and despite any troublesome news you might have heard a few years ago about the CEO and his ties to the Kremlin’s cybersecurity unit, they’re still a top pick for us in contention for the best parental control software of 2022.
Why? Well, it all comes down to user-friendliness. Kaspersky Safe Kids excels on nearly every metric we tested it on, whether it was how intuitive the app was to set up for parents, or how accurate its detection agent was when it came to parsing through a child’s browsing history and knowing which sites needed to be flagged and which could be left alone.
We achieved a nearly 100% accuracy rating across all our detection tests, the top score of all the options showcased on this list. This was achieved in part thanks to the ease of use aspect of the software, which made it exceedingly simple to carefully customize and control exactly what kind of content could (or couldn’t) pass through the wires into the eyes of any children in the network.
Add to that a great series of customer service options as well as Kaspersky’s award-winning antivirus software (an upgrade that comes separate from Safe Kids, but can be integrated into the software seamlessly if you so choose), and you’ve got a recipe for parental control success.
3. Aura Family Plan – Best for families in the US
Whether you’re part of a busy household and need to ensure safe browsing for your kids or you’re an individual looking for credit monitoring that covers the three big US-based bureaus, including Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax, Aura has everything you could ask for.
Aside from offering a VPN, antivirus, junk email, and spam filtering, plus safe browsing tools, Aura packs some outstanding features into its parental control software. Though, which plan you’ll need will depend on the features you require. An individual plan starts at $12 per month when billed annually, covering a single user for up to 10 devices. It also includes $1 Million in Identity Theft Insurance.
The Couples Plan covers two users on up to 20 devices and costs $22 monthly, billed as an annual payment. This plan includes up to $2 Million in Identity Theft Insurance* ($1M Insurance per adult). Both of these plans offer Financial Fraud Protection and Identity Theft Protection.
The best value plan is the Family Plan, costing $37 per month billed annually. It covers 5 adults, and unlimited Kids with Online & Device Security covering 50 devices. Up to $5 Million Identity Theft Insurance* ($1M Insurance per adult) is included, alongside what you’re here for parental controls.
Aura’s parental controls offer the following:
- Screen time: Set limits for games or apps to prevent your children from overindulging on their tablet, phone, or computer.
- Content blocking and filtering: View the websites your children are visiting, blocking access to adult sites or content unsuitable for younger audiences.
- Internet usage tracking: Keep tabs on your child’s internet activities and find out how much time they’re spending online and the content they’re accessing.
If you require parental controls, the Family Plan is the way to go. But if you’re unlikely to benefit from the bells and whistles like bank account monitoring, a password manager, and an ad blocker, then it’d be wise to weigh the cost against other providers. It’s also worth noting that Aura is currently only available to customers in the US.
4. Norton Family – Best value
Although the daunting price of $49.99 upfront for an annual pass to the Norton Family network of parental control apps may not seem like the cheapest option out there, $59.99/year for the entire library of Norton antivirus and network protection apps is just about the best deal you’ll find in town.
Recognizing the problem that many families were facing when it came to paying for both an antivirus suite as well as a parental control app on top of it, Norton has capitalized on the more budget-conscious consumer and packaged a nearly-perfect parental control option into their greater network of protection-based software to pass the savings onto you.
As a $10 addition, the option to upgrade to Norton Premiere will only cost parents an extra $0.83 a month in order to get some of the best protection money can buy. Norton implements many of the same design elements from their antivirus options into the parental control suite, and the effort pays off in spades.
Everything from the monitoring dashboard to the settings menu is well laid out and easy to understand for the normal user, but also offers an intriguing amount of more advanced options to tinker with too (for anyone who’s into that sort of thing).
If you’re someone who’s shopping on a budget and wants the absolute best way to protect your children on every front (malware, spyware, and malicious links included), then Norton Family plus the Norton Antivirus Premier suite of apps are the right choice for you!
Read our full Norton Family Review.
5. Mobicip – Best for Non-Tech Savvy Parents
One of the biggest problems that many less tech-taught parents run into when trying to get their kids or teenagers corralled into a new parental control network, is actually being able to stay one step ahead of their kids when it comes to keeping the network in check.
Not all parents have the most up-to-date knowledge on what a web filtering system is or how to protect their access passwords from the prying eyes of their children. Often, this makes it easy for kids to circumvent their blocks, whether that’s by guessing the master pass or a parent not securing every aspect of their child’s online lives as well as they thought they did.
Luckily, Mobicip has made the whole process of getting your own parental controls setup and running as tight as a drum easier than ever before. Mobicip strips away all the unnecessary frayed edges that some other parental control suites have in their setup process, streamlining everything so it’s easy and intuitive for even the least technologically-inclined among us to understand.
Mobicip also brings a huge amount of “control” to the parental control market, allowing you to specifically whittle down what your child can or can’t see on a site-by-site basis, as well as filtering for broader categories like “pornography” or “bad language” on the fly.
Admittedly we were a bit disappointed with the amount of features available for iOS and mobile as a whole, but aside from that small caveat Mobicip still offers one of the best-designed, most-intuitive setup processes we’ve seen on parental control software yet. If you’re someone who struggles to keep up with their kids when it comes to the web, look no further because Mobicip has you covered.
Read our full Mobicip review.
6. Bark.us – best Social Media Monitoring
Bark.us allows you to protect as many of your kids’ devices as you want for a flat price, with no tiers or added fees. If you have a lot of kids to keep track of, this could be a great value. All of that activity is monitored through a single web dashboard.
Bark.us monitors text messages, Youtube, email, and social media. In total, more than 40 popular apps can be connected. Bark.us focuses on mobile devices—Android, iOS, and Amazon Fire—but also works for MacOS, Windows, and Chromebook.
The app does more than just keep a record of online activity and filter out undesirable content. It can also detect activity that indicates online predators, adult content, sexting, cyberbulling, drug use, and suicidal thoughts. Parents receive alerts via email or text message when these issues pop up.
To save parents time, the Bark dashboard offers a simple snapshot view of what your kids are up to, like which apps they use most and how often they use them.
Customer support is available 24/7 to assist with any issues.