If adults already have a hard time weaning themselves away from their devices, imagine how that can be more difficult for the young ones. That’s why Google’s Family Link app has been a very welcome tool for parents and guardians as they help kids limit their screen time and the content that they consume as well. Now Google has made some improvements and additions to the app that will come soon to your Android devices starting with Android Q and hopefully elsewhere.
They announced at the Google I/O developer’s conference that Family Link will not just be an app anymore but it will eventually be part of all Android devices. You will be able to find it under the “Digital Well-being and parental controls” in your device settings, This will only be available with Android Q devices at first so it will probably take a bit of time before all of us get to experience it. Or you can just download the app for now.
Soon, Google will also let parents set time limits on specific apps for their children (or even for themselves if they want to). It can be tedious to set these time limits for each app but it’s a sacrifice you’ll have to make to help your kids better manage how they spend their time on their devices. You will also be able to give them “bonus time” beyond the time limit for the device so they can wrap up whatever it is they’re doing.
While Family Link is intended for younger kids, parents have also said it can be helpful for teenagers as well (as much as teens will probably struggle with parental supervision at their age). Google says they’re now bringing better Chromebook support as well for the parents and their teens. The teacher recommendations also now has various collections for kids of specific ages.
Hopefully, these changes and additions to the Family Link app (and eventually device section) will be beneficial as we try to combat gadget addiction. Google says they’re also open to feedback so they can make it better not just for parents but the kids as well.