5 Apps for Parents to Monitor and Limit Screen Time

Parents Monitoring Little Girls Screen Time
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These free and premium apps built to monitor your kid's phone activity and screen time are bringing parents everywhere some peace of mind during the digital age.
Courtesy of Apple
Courtesy of Apple

Zift

We love this app because it goes further than just helping parents monitor screen time. Zift offers parental controls like instant reporting of online searches, updates on newly installed apps, and alerts if your child views inappropriate content. Zift also gives parents tips on dangerous apps and social media phrases to know through their online parents community, and its award-winning Net Nanny Smart Filter technology can observe individual web pages to determine if the content is safe for your child in real-time. (Instead of just blocking them altogether.) And if you don’t like what your kids are up to? You can immediately block their internet access.

Available on iTunes and Google Play for free or access Zift Premium for $4.99/moth.  

RELATED: New Parental Controls on YouTube Kids Lets You Monitor Screen Time

Courtesy of Apple
Courtesy of Apple

Screen Time

Screen Time is great for customization — you can reward your child with more screen time after they finish their homework or chores! Parents can also preset blocked periods like bedtime, homework time, or school hours. For moments when you’re feeling extra generous, you can activate "Free Play" to temporarily override settings without messing up your screen monitoring routine. All downloads are approved or rejected by you, and you can keep an eye on your children’s web history, too. Bonus: One Screen Time account works for the whole family—you can give access to relatives or caregivers—and your kids won’t be able to uninstall the app without a secure password. Genius!

Available on iTunes, Google Play, and Amazon for free or access Screen Time Premium for $4.99/month.

Courtesy of Apple
Courtesy of Apple

unGlue

Aiming to instill better habits in kids, unGlue is all about empowering kids to learn screen time etiquette. You can set boundaries on entertainment by bundling all major apps, sites, and games into one category and setting a time limit so your kids can access the internet while not getting distracted by anything deemed as “fun.” Kids can also learn to balance phone time by tracking their own screen time — they'll be rewarded more internet time if they accumulate roll-over minutes, complete extra chores, or put in a required number of daily steps tracked through the app as well.

Available on iTunes, Google Play, and Windows for free or access unGlue Premium for $8.33/month.

RELATED: Parents Trying to Limit Kids' Screen Time Should Start With Their Own
 

Courtesy of Apple
Courtesy of Apple

Qustodio

Everything you need to know about your kid's screen time is beautifully displayed on Qustodio’s online dashboard. Qustodio offers up the standard features like the Smart Web Filters that can block inappropriate content, game limitations, and a device time schedule so your kids are unplugged when they need to be. You’ll also receive Smart Activity Reports to stay on top of your child’s activity, and the ability to monitor social networks, track calls and texts (for Androids only), and install location tracking with helpful panic alerts.

Available on iTunes, Amazon, and Google Play or sign up for the three family plans: Small Plan for $54.95/year, Medium Plan for $96.95/year, or Large Plan for $137.95/year.

Courtesy of Apple
Courtesy of Apple

Norton Family

Norton’s award-winning parental control software is now available in app form. Keeping tabs on your kids’ activity is easy with web, time, search, social network (Windows only), mobile apps (Android only), text message, and video supervision. This way you know who your kids are in touch with, what social media image they are presenting of themselves, and how often they are gaming. Norton Family also offers personal information protection for those with Windows devices, so your child doesn’t disclose sensitive or endangering information. Our favorite feature? "Instant Lock" which lets you unplug your kid during dinnertime. 

Available in different forms for iTunes, Google Play, and Amazon for free or access Norton Family Premium for $49.99/year.

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