This is a sponsored post by T-Mobile.
Kids are so technologically advanced nowadays, it’s crazy! I’ll be honest, many times when I can’t figure out how to connect or operate certain electronic devices at home, I have to get help from my children. Data shows that an average child gets their first cellphone at the age of 10. I was still playing with my stamp collection at that age! While part of me is proud that they are able to learn quickly, a big part of me is a nervous wreck and I’m sure many parents can feel the same way.
We’ve certainly had talks with our kids about the dangers of being on the internet; the people they communicate with, the types of games they play, and the videos they watch. We’ve even had the conversation of the mental and physical effects it could potentially have on them when spending too much time on electronics. We also do our best to monitor what they are exposed to.
Studies show the average U.S. family has five or more connected devices at home, and I think we fall under the “or more” category. There are TVs, tablets, laptops, and all types of game consoles that allow them to play online. I don’t know about all the other parents out there, but we’ve come to the realization that no matter how hard we try to control or monitor their online activity and media usage, there is just no way of catching everything.
I have some good news that will finally give us parents peace of mind! It’s called the T-Mobile Family Mode. This new device will give us moms and dads more control of what our kids are seeing on their devices. And not just their smartphones — it also gives us control over the electronics they can access including their tablets, consoles and other electronic gadgets.
What’s even greater about this is that there are multiple ways to ensure our kid’s safety through several features. One is the Data Usage Control. With this, I decide what times my son or daughter can use their gadgets by pausing or resuming access. There are days when the kids get up before me (don’t judge me), and I want to make sure they are not able to just grab their iPad and do whatever they want. Now, I can set the data usage control time to later in the morning. This also applies to access at night when they should be sleeping.
Real-time location information and monitoring is the feature that really puts my mind at ease. Not only does it help us find misplaced devices, it helps me know where my kids are at all times. My son often goes to the backyard with his iPhone, and even though that’s not too far from me, I would still like to make sure he’s there. Other times when we are playing at the park, the kids jump from one activity to another, making it hard to keep up. Although I do everything I can to make sure the kids don’t wander off out of sight, it’s still great to know that I can locate them through their device immediately if need.
Filter web content is another option that gives us more control and security. Many apps my kids use have content filtering already, but sometimes it’s not enough. Often, they can unintentionally come across inappropriate images and language. So now, I have added content filtering to steer my kids away from those types of content. I do this with YouTube and Fortnite which are the two most used apps for them.
That’s not all of it yet. I can also know what exact activities are happening on all the devices at home though the Device Usage feature. I can tell how long they are on the phone, what apps are being used and what websites they are visiting. This holds them accountable and they can’t try to hide what they are doing and I know what to look out for. I try my best to keep my younger kids away from social media apps and sites, so this is one feature that helps a lot with that issue.
This new T-Mobile FamilyMode device simply connects with the FamilyMode app, which gives us the ability to control the setting for each and every device connected to our home’s wifi. And it’s available on BOTH Apple and Android devices. This is perfect since there are so many ways my child can watch online videos, play online games and connect to the internet. So even if I restrict them from one devices, they can’t attempt to access content through another device, because everything connected to our home Wi-Fi is under my control. This app is available on BOTH Apple and Android devices.
So now, we can all sleep a little better, focus on other tasks more and be at peace with what our kids are watching, listening to and playing. We’ve been very hesitant about giving our ten year old a phone for this very reason. After all, our children’s safety is our #1 priority. But since we’ve gotten the T-Mobile FamilyMode app and device, and we now have more control and more security with what goes in and out of our home through our electronics, I think we may reconsider sooner than later.
If you’re convinced and you’re ready to start taking control of what your kids do on their electronic devices, you can sign up and get your T-Mobile FamilyMode Home Base. For a limited time, it is available for $20. On top of that you can take advantage of other benefits that it comes with like, Family Allowances, Netflix On Us, Simple Global and more. Just visit T-Mobile.com to learn more.