The Best Parental Control Apps for Android and iPhone 2021
If you have a family with several people using smartphones, having a good parental control app is very important. Children can have unlimited access to the internet, and engage in conversations with strangers without your knowledge. This can be dangerous, so it’s important to have control over your child’s access to certain apps.
Parental control apps can also take advantage of the GPS built into every smartphone. You can keep track of the location of everyone in your family, and even set locations that will give you an alert when accessed. Along with these basic features, you can monitor a user’s conversations, photos, app use, screen time, and more.
To help you choose which apps are right for you, we put together a list of five fantastic parental control apps in 2021.
Top Parental Control Apps of 2021
Best Overall Solution – mSpy
mSpy is the best overall system for parental control. It can go completely undetected on a user’s phone, and it doesn’t use any extra battery power. It will work on just about any iPhone, Android, or Tablet, without being rooted or modified in any way.
Monitor Chats on Social Media
Private conversations on social media are filled with dangerous content. This is where your children are most likely to come in contact with strangers. mSpy lets you monitor the conversations that are happening on your child’s social media.
It is possible to monitor and log chats from these popular social media apps:
In addition to social media apps, texts and imessages can also be monitored. Track sent and received messages on default texting apps, so you don’t let strangers or bad actors slip into your child’s phone.
Live Location Tracking
The live location tracking will be able to show you where every phone on your account is located. This uses the phone’s GPS to deliver accurate and up-to-date information about where a person is. You can set up a geo-fence that will alert you when a member of the family leaves the designated area. This is an effective way to make sure nobody is going anywhere that they are not allowed to.
Monitor Call History
If you’re worried about who your child might be talking to on phone calls, you can check the call history of a user. See incoming and outgoing calls, as well as the time and date of each call.
The setup process for mSpy is very simple. Follow these steps to get started:
- Install mSpy from the official website
- Create an account
- Purchase a subscription that fits your needs
- Install mSpy on every phone and device you want to track
- Login and access your data
While many different apps are able to provide bits of control here and there, mSpy is the best full-featured solution. Every aspect of parental control is covered in their different subscription offers. Secure your family’s safety with this all-encompassing parental control software. mSpy is designed to offer an easy-to-use set of controls that can be applied to multiple smartphones on your account. It will give you reports and alerts on activity happening in your network. Assign different restrictions to different phones, and take complete control over the apps and services available to each person.
NetNanny is a very popular solution for implementing parental controls into your family’s devices. Use monitoring features, limit access to specific apps or content, and protect everyone in real-time. This is another complete solution that offers a large variety of features. Some of these features include:
- Parental Controls
- Internet Filter
- Block Pornography
- Screen Time Management
- Block Apps
- Website Blocker
This software can be installed on Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Kindle, and Chromebook. While it has great compatibility and features, the setup process is a little difficult. It’s also one of the more expensive solutions on the market, but if it’s the right fit for you, this might be justified. Check out NetNanny here.
Kaspersky Safe Kids
Kaspersky does a great job of providing basic tools that work very well. The concept is similar to other solutions, where you’d receive reports and alerts from phones connected to the account. Block access to porn, track location, and monitor your kid’s activities on social media. It has a very easy setup process that will get you up and running in a short amount of time.
- Screen-time controls
- Website and app filters
- YouTube Safe Search
- Location Tracking
- Apps usage control
- Battery tracker
One of the best aspects of Kaspersky Safe Kids is that this software is free with limited features. This is a good solution for anyone that wants to get set up and try it out before committing to purchasing the full version. If you’re looking for just basic content filtering and screen management, that can all be done in the free version of the app. The paid version is very affordable at only $14.99 a year.
Norton Family provides insights that help parents foster a healthy life balance for their children and their devices, while providing tools to help them teach safe, smart, and healthy online habits. Manage your kids’ time spent online so you know when it’s time to encourage having some offline fun. Let your kids explore the Web freely, with tools that help you block unsuitable websites while keeping you in the know about which sites they’re visiting.
Stay on top of how much time your kids spend on their devices. Foster healthier habits by scheduling specific times of the day or week each device can be used and how many hours a day can be spent on each device. See the words, terms, and phrases your kids are searching for to gain insights into their interests and help protect them from inappropriate content.
- Web Supervision
- Time Supervision
- Search Supervision
- Access Request
- Video Supervision
- Mobile App Supervision
- Instant Lock
- Location Supervision
Managing remote work and home school can be challenging. Norton helps you keep your child focused on schoolwork by allowing access to specific sites required by your child’s school and helping to block other internet distractions while school is in session. See more about Norton Family here.
If you’re looking for something a little more simple, OurPact is a great solution for basic filters. You can use this software to filter out any unwanted web content on a phone. It works on both iOS and Android devices and is free to use. You can manage SMS and iMessage access through schedule allowances, or manual blocks to ensure texting doesn’t cause distractions during homework time or family meals.
OurPact’s View gives visibility into your child’s online activity via automated periodic, on-demand, or private gallery screenshots, all encrypted for maximum safety.
- Web Filter
- Screenshot View
- Block Texting
- Family Locator
- Screen Time Allowance
- App Rules
Try the free version for basic content blocking and granting features. The paid versions unlock more features, on more devices.