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New Google app unlocks Android for kids

San Francisco, March 16: If you have a kid under-13 and wish to introduce him or her to Google, the company has just built an Android-based app for you.

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With the ‘Family Link’ app, parents in the US can create a Google account for their kids — which is like their own account — where parents can manage the apps their kids can use, keep an eye on screen time and set a bedtime on the kids’ devices, the company announced on Thursday.

Here’s how it works.

“First, your kid will need a new device that runs Android Nougat (7.0) or higher. Then, download Family Link onto your device and create a Google Account for them through the app. Finally, sign them into their new device,” posted Pavni Diwanji, Vice President, Engineering, at Google.
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You can then use ‘Family Link’ to manage the apps your kid can use, approve or block the apps your kid wants to download from the Google Play Store and see how much time your kid spends on their favorite apps with weekly or monthly activity reports.

Parents can remotely lock kids’ devices when it’s time to play, study or sleep.

“Parents across the US can request an invite to the Family Link early access program. After receiving an invite, parents with kids under 13 years old can download and try the Family Link app,” Diwanji added.

“We’re just getting started, and we’ll be asking parents using Family Link for feedback about how to improve the experience before we make the app broadly available,” Diwanji said.

According to The Verge, the new app seems to steal some of Amazon’s share of the tablet market which offers great kid controls on the Kindle.

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