Cell phone monitoring app overload. We feel you. It’s a real thing. There seem to be way too many monitoring apps on the market. And, unfortunately, most of them aren’t very good. Some overpromise and underdeliver. Others don’t do what they claim at all.
So, how do you find a child monitoring app that’s actually amazing? We did the work for you. And today, we’ve got 7 of the best apps to monitor kids’ phones.
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Top 7 Best Child Monitoring Apps on the Market
There are a lot of monitoring apps on the market, and many of them are designed with old technology. eyeZy isn’t one of them. A relative newcomer, the app is backed by parental control experts with decades of experience. And most importantly, they’re parents, too. That means they understand the challenges of parenting in the digital age and the frustration that comes with every piece of software that claims to be the best cell phone monitoring app.
eyeZy includes social media monitoring so you can review their conversations, the ability to see their pics and videos, geofencing so you can track their whereabouts, alerts so you can attempt to prevent something bad from happening, keylogging so you can see everything they type, and so much more.
Pros: eyeZy works in hidden mode, so you can monitor their world without them knowing. And everything happens wirelessly, so you can log in to your Control Panel and review their information without having to grab their phone or hook it up to your computer with a USB cable. And whether you want to monitor iPhone, iPad, or Android devices, you’re good to go. The app is also competitively priced, making it attractive if you’re searching for apps to monitor your child’s phone.
Cons: Installing is fairly easy, but you need to check compatibility beforehand to be sure that your device works. eyeZy lays out compatibility requirements for iOS devices that are jailbroken, non-jailbroken devices, and all Android devices. Just make sure you read it first for smooth sailing.
When it comes to device protection, Norton is one of the most respected brands. But just because a company makes a great antivirus product, it doesn’t mean they know how to build a cell phone monitoring app. So, does Norton impress or disappoint? That depends on your expectations when looking for how to monitor your child’s phone.
The app is designed to let kids roam the web freely. You can take comfort knowing that you have tools at your disposal to block inappropriate websites, and to find out which sites they visit regularly. You can also find out what words they’ve searched for and lock their device remotely. Keep in mind, though, that the app doesn’t work in hidden mode, so they’ll know you’re using it to monitor their activity.
Pros: We like the design of Norton Nanny. The dashboard is relatively easy to use and you can add an unlimited number of devices to monitor. There are also great geofencing tools at your disposal.
Cons: This might come as a bit of a shock, but Norton Nanny isn’t designed for Macs. And considering Macs have increasingly become one of the most popular computers for kids, we’re surprised. What’s more, if you install Norton Nanny on an iOS device, it breaks monitoring alerts. And finally, there’s no social media tracking.
If you’re looking for an app to monitor a kid’s phone, chances are you’ve stumbled upon FamiSafe. Like its name suggests, FamiSafe is designed to keep your family safe. Overall, the app does what it promises. You can block and filter websites and apps. You can see their browser history. And you can see how often they’re using specific apps. If you’re looking for a monitoring app that does a few things really well, FamiSafe is worth exploring.
Pros: You can download the child monitoring app from the App Store, Google Play, and Amazon. You can also get FamiSafe for macOS, Windows, and Chrome. The cross-device support is great. And the ease of use is second to none.
Cons: Social monitoring is quite limited. For example, while you can review their TikTok history, you can’t see their social media conversations on apps like Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Kik, and others. What’s more, the app doesn’t work in stealth mode,
Even some of the most unexpected places house the most offensive content. That’s true for YouTube, where it’s easy to stumble upon videos that just aren’t suitable for children. That’s where YouTube Kids comes in. It features curated videos that are family-friendly and often educational in nature, so you can take comfort knowing they aren’t watching horrible things on YouTube.
Pros: It’s easy to install and features a friendly design that kids love. And parents too. If you want a basic app that answers the age-old question of “how to monitor my child’s phone with ease”, this one might be worth exploring.
Cons: The app doesn’t do anything else other than filter out controversial YouTube content. And since kids can watch videos on all kinds of other sites, this might not be the most useful app for kids older than 2 or 3 years old.
With a name like Bark, you’d think the app is designed to protect your kids and offer you warnings when something is about to go awry. And it certainly does, to an extent. You can monitor dozens of social media accounts to keep tabs on their conversations, but there are some limits. To monitor those accounts, you’ll actually need to know the account credentials for each one.
Pros: You can monitor both texts and emails quite easily within the app. What’s more, you can add multiple profiles if you have more than one child. And the dedicated app for parents makes monitoring a breeze.
Cons: You’d expect most features to work out of the box. But in our testing, we found that content blocking didn’t always work as promised. Not a huge dealbreaker, but when you consider the expensive price, we expected all features to work flawlessly. We also found that the location tracking feature is pretty basic.
Kaspersky Safe Kids
Kaspersky is a market leader in online security software. And most recently, they’ve ventured out into monitoring kids phones. Their monitoring service lets you filter content, manage screen time, see their YouTube search history, and manage app usage. It also includes real-time alerts, so if your kid tries to access a site or app you don’t approve of, you’ll know about it.
Pros: If you’re worried about your kids accessing adult websites or content you don’t approve of, Kaspersky Safe Kids does a decent job with content filtering functionality. The price is also rather competitive, and you can try out Kaspersky Safe Kids free for 7 days to see if it’s right for you.
Cons: If you’re looking for the best cell phone parental control app, this one doesn’t stack up as much as some of the others. The interface can be confusing, and the app is fairly limited on iPhones and iPads.
The OurPact premise is a pretty intriguing one. If you’re looking for apps to monitor kids without them knowing, OurPact is probably not for you. That’s because OurPact is more about the agreement you make with your kids. They’ll use their phone responsibly. And you’ll monitor them to make sure they stay out of trouble. You set limits. And they know and agree with them.
Pros: You get a suite of tools to help keep your kids safe. Things like Internet blocking, text blocking, rules for apps, screen time scheduling, and more. You also get web filtration. Overall, this app to monitor kids’ phone offers a fairly comprehensive package.
Cons: If you’re looking for the best apps to monitor kid’s phone, you’re probably looking for call and text monitoring. Unfortunately, you won’t find that here.
How to Install a Monitoring App
Once you’ve decided on an app you like, just purchase a subscription to get going. Installation instructions vary from app to app. For example, some apps in our free cell phone monitoring apps review can be installed via the App Store or Google Play. But those are usually limited in features, and they don’t work in hidden mode.
For the more advanced apps, like eyeZy, you’ll likely receive an installation package in your email after purchasing a subscription. Just follow the instructions and you’ll be on your way to monitoring their device.
One Final Word About Choosing a Child Monitoring App
You might be tempted by a free cell phone monitoring app. But for the most part, these apps aren’t very good. They might contain viruses or spyware, or they could be designed to steal your information. The apps contained in this review are reputable and honest. While they cost money, you can’t put a price on the peace of mind that comes with knowing you’re protecting your kids — and everyone’s personal data.