This service's limited location tracking works on both iOS and Android, although there's no geofencing option. You can manage only a few dozen apps on iOS, as opposed to all Android apps. Web filtering is more powerful on iOS, while monitoring texts and calls works on only Android. Read our full Qustodio review.
Find & manage your child's Android device location - Google For Families Help
Once the most powerful parental-control app for iPhones, OurPact was hobbled by an Apple rule change in late that nixed the service's geofencing, location tracking and time allowances on iOS. At its peak, OurPact was the only parental-control app we tested that could manage or block any iOS app. It can still do so for Android devices. OurPact also gets kids involved in managing the daily allowance of screen time that you give them, and it does a good job of scheduling.
Yet, its website filtering simply blocks porn, and it can't monitor calls or texts at all, even on Android. However, you can block messaging apps, and OurPact remains a joy to use.
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Read our full OurPact review. Screen Time does an excellent job of managing and scheduling kids' device access. Unfortunately, this app doesn't do a whole lot else on iOS devices. And it has baffling upcharges for location tracking and web filters, both of which come standard with other parental-control apps. We liked how this service doles out additional screen time for chores or good deeds.
But you can't block apps on iOS, and there's no geofencing or call or text monitoring at all. Read our full Screen Time review. ESET Parental Control for Android sticks to one platform, but it doesn't shine even there, lacking text-message- and call-monitoring features. The free app management and time management do work well, as do the paid location tracking and geofencing.
That's because Kaspersky Safe Kids does more at half the price. MMGuardian has nearly every parental-control feature you might want, especially on Android, but the user interfaces are outdated and frustrating. Both the iOS and Android apps offer location tracking and excellent web filtering. App management is strong on Android but primitive on iOS. On Android, the parent can read every text and block any number.
Time management and screen-time scheduling are also Android-only. Read our full MMGuardian review. Evaluation Criteria We focused on apps that emphasize proactively setting up filters and limits before your child uses the phone rather than merely tracking activities after the fact. We took the following criteria into account:. We tested each app on every platform it supported twice, from installation to testing to uninstall.
We typically monitored activity from the MacBook Pro, but if apps offered control from a smartphone app, we tested those features as well. Calls and texts for monitoring purposes were made from a secondary Android device. Android parental-control apps remain more robust than their iOS counterparts in most cases, especially with regard to call and text monitoring. But new additions to iOS have closed the gap somewhat.
We will note areas in which there are discrepancies in the functionality offered on each platform, but we are not providing distinct ratings and reviews for the iOS versus the Android version of each app. Parental-control apps for mobile devices work best when they're part of a comprehensive approach to teaching your kids about behaving responsibly online. For that reason, we avoided testing apps that can run in stealth mode on a child's phone.
There are many products that tout this capability, but some people use such services to spy not on their children, but on their spouses or on other adults, which is illegal in most U. In addition, we did not consider apps that offered the ability to record a child's phone conversations.
State laws vary on the legality of recording someone without his or her consent, and no states allow the recording of phone calls without either party's consent. Norton, Kaspersky and ESET, which has its own parental-control app for Android, also make antivirus software, and many antivirus products have parental controls built in.
To see how well those controls stack up against the stand-alone services, please read The Best and Worst Antivirus Software for Parents. Tom's Guide. Jump To:.
Best Cell Phone Parental Control Software of 12222
Best overall and great for iOS Top pick for Android Great parental control bargain Best multiplatform support Gets kids involved Does one thing very well Leaves room for improvement Full-featured but frustrating. Reasons to Buy Great design. There are other features not found in the rest of the monitoring apps like email interception. Link: mspy. Children Tracking has a slightly different focus compared to other Android monitoring apps on the list.
Link: Children Tracking. The TruthSpy is a free Android monitoring app which comes with several features to track a certain phone. The hallmark of the app is its tracking capability. The system for tracking is remarkably accurate, allowing users to rescue a missing device. The app comes with other features you would want from a monitoring app like browser history and GPS history. Overall, this is a versatile app and a sound choice for any parent. The app is incredibly convenient because you can monitor remotely from your own phone.
It gives parents the power to monitor browsing and chat activities, very important if they play online games. It is also great for employers to protect trade secrets through features like GPS charts and call history.
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Link: track it. SpyHuman is a monitoring app for those who prefer to monitor on multiple devices. Compatibility on different devices is great for parents who need to be seated at their desks for a long time. As the name suggests, this is a free Android monitoring app to track cell phone location and activity. After installing the app, you can perform several functions like access contacts, location, information, and multimedia content.
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- Best parental control apps for your kid’s smartphone?
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- How to Monitor Your Kids' Mobile Devices.
You will get all the features you can find in paid Android apps like location tracking, view contacts, and multimedia files. Hence, this is a great acquisition for parents. Link: freeandroidspy. Mobile Tracker Free is perfect for parents looking for a free monitoring app for Android.
In short, if you need an app that will monitor online activity without monthly plans, Mobile Tracker Free is the best. The monitoring app comes with all the features you need from a mobile tracker which also include SMS tracking, social media tracking, recovering pictures and so much more. Cell Tracker is a fantastic choice for parents who need an Android monitoring app. The app is also completely free and comes with all the bells and whistles you need to monitor your kids.
The best part about Cell Tracker is its ability to run in the background of a target device. Hence, parents can monitor devices without a risk of being detected by kids. The app lets you do so much including view call logs, text message history and a lot more. With that goal in mind, we provided a detailed list of all the mobile apps that can help you as a parent monitor online activities.
Lastly, we focused on free Android monitoring apps for this particular article because there are plenty that deserves the spotlight.
Hope you enjoyed reading the article, do let us know about your thoughts in the section below. Try it Now. Download multimedia content stored on phone for your viewing.
A keylogger tool to track what your kids typed on the keypad. Cons: Cannot track Windows phones. Cons: Compatibility issue. Keylogger feature needs manual setup, does not work automatically. User-friendly interface Optimized to consume less battery Cons: The app contains advertisements.
As per users, their customer service is not good Link: Children Tracking. Pros: Accessible interface Tracks accurate locations in real time Free 48 hours trial Cons: Some users have complained about the app stopping abruptly. Voice recording does not work well Link: truthspy.
Pros: Track vital information like Wi-Fi tracking.