For a long time, we’ve heard about Google initiatives towards providing under-13s access to its products and service. And in March, the firm formalized Family Link, a solution that allows children to use Android as well as Play Store applications, while being controlled by their parents.
This solution was available by invitation, as part of the beta, until today. Google has just deployed Family Link to the US (where it’s now available for everyone).
The company was already proposing YouTube Kids for the under-13s to be entertained without falling into inappropriate videos. And with Family Link, it’s the overall Android operating system that falls under parental control.
To access them, parents must install the Family Link application and create a type of Google account for their children. This is controlled by the parents and is different from the standard Google account.
For example, Family Link allows parents to control which applications their children use the most, validate a new application before it is installed on the mobile, or control the content that the child wants to see.
But the most interesting part is that parents can also set the time at which the tablet or smartphone should go off. When this time is exceeded, the unit automatically stops. Parents can use an Android device, iOS or even a browser to control everything.
Google only advertises the availability of this children’s version in the United States, at least, for now.
One downside is that with the exception of some models (like the Samsung Galaxy Tab A or the LG K3), Family Link needs Android 7.0.
This is surely a move that will help parents monitor and control the content that their children are exposed to in this overwhelming digital age. There are a lot of inappropriate content online, and without proper control, kids will be brainwashed. With this device, parents should now be rest assured that they can monitor their children online.