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Google offers a solution to content management through Family Link

Family Link offers parents a new way to manage Android devices. (Source: Google)
Family Link offers parents a new way to manage Android devices. (Source: Google)
The service (currently invite-only) allows parents to restrict their children's use of Android devices. Parents can control what apps are downloaded, limit screentime, and lock a device at certain intervals during the day.

In the information age, a top priority of parents is managing their children’s exposure to electronic media and the internet. With nearly unfettered access to the largest repository of information in human history, parents may worry about what little eyes are viewing and soaking in. Enter Family Link, a new service by Google aimed at equipping parents to manage their children’s Android accounts.

Family Link works like this: the parent can download the Family Link app on their Android device and create a Family Link account. This account will then be used to sign in on the child’s device. Once the sign in is complete, parents can then control various aspects of their child’s experience. Apps can be restricted, use time can be measured, and time limits can be set. For instance, parents can set the screen to lock after a certain amount of screen-on time, or the device can be set to lock at a specific time of day (e.g., bedtime).

There are some drawbacks to Family Link right now, though. Currently, the app is available only by invite, which parents can request at the Family Link site. Invites are only open to users in the United States. Also, the child’s device must run Android 7.0 Nougat or later, or be on the follow list:

  • Alcatel Dawn
  • Alcatel Fierce 4
  • Alcatel Pixi Unite
  • LG K3
  • LG Stylo 2 Plus
  • LG X Power
  • Samsung Galaxy Luna
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab A
  • Sony Xperia X

Families invested in Apple’s ecosystem are out of luck for now.

Some may see this as intense micro-management or may disagree with allowing children to use screens at all. As a parent myself, I try my hardest to limit my children’s exposure to screens and devices, but that’s almost impossible in this day and age. It’s nice to have options available to help parents raise their children; hopefully, Family Link will expand to include all Android users soon.

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2017 03 > Google offers a solution to content management through Family Link
Sam Medley, 2017-03-16 (Update: 2017-03-16)
Sam Medley
Sam Medley - Review Editor - @samuel_medley
I've been a "tech-head" my entire life. After graduating college with a degree in Mathematics, I worked in finance and banking a few years before taking a job as a Systems Analyst for my local school district. I started working with Notebookcheck in October of 2016 and have enjoyed writing news articles and notebook reviews. My areas of interest include the business side of technology, retro gaming, Linux, and innovative gadgets. When I'm not hunched over an electronic device or writing code for a new database, I'm either outside with my family, playing a decade-old video game, or sitting behind a drum set.