Your kid’s Android screen time is out of control. Here’s how to rein it in

Family Link is a simple option to preserve tabs in your youngsters’ display time. 

Angela Lang/CNET

Over the previous couple of weeks, I feel it is honest to say we dad and mom have all loosened our display cut-off dates for our children. With most of us under stay-at-home orders and with school canceled, letting the children use phones and tablets greater than standard has turn out to be the brand new norm. But, it is nonetheless a good suggestion to know what they’re doing. Google’s Family Link makes parental controls on Android devices a breeze. Seriously, I want Apple’s Screen Time was this easy and flexible.

If you have got kids beneath the age of 13, you are in near-complete management of their Android telephones by Family Link. For youngsters over the age of 13, you continue to have controls, however they’ll disable the characteristic on their very own (don’t fret, you will get an alert if that occurs). 

Using an app like Family Link will enable you slowly rein of their display time to particular apps, or for the machine total. Here’s what it’s worthwhile to know to get began.

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These Android units work with Google Family Link

Family Link is a free Android app that can run on any phone or pill operating Android or greater. You can test the Android model by opening the Settings app, scrolling to the underside of the listing and tapping on About phone

According to Google, you should utilize Family Link on some Android and Android units, but it surely’s trial and error to get it working. The “Sign in on an Android device” part of this support page walks you through several different scenarios

If your child’s machine runs Android 10, Family Link is constructed into the machine and would not require the devoted app. 

Parents can handle a Family Link account from any Android machine operating Android or later, in addition to on an iPhone running iOS 9 or newer.


Get Family Link all arrange

Before you begin, you will have to know your Google account info, in addition to your youngster or kids in the event that they have already got an account. If they do not, that is all proper, the Family Link app will stroll you thru setting one up. 

You’ll additionally have to have each units close to one another. 

Start by establishing the Family Link in your account. If you are utilizing a tool that is operating Android 10, open the Settings app, then go to Google > Parental Controls > Get Started. Select Parent and observe the prompts. 

On your kid’s machine, both launch Family Link by the settings app on an Android 10 machine or download the Family Link app from the Play Store and open it. Select the choice saying the machine is for a kid after which choose your kid’s Google account and observe the prompts. 

You’ll be requested to register to your Google account so you may hyperlink it to your kid’s account because the parental account. Then, you will arrange some primary account controls. 

The preliminary setup course of takes just some minutes, and after it is finished, you can remotely change settings and restrictions from the Family Link app in your phone. 


The Google Family Link feed exhibits you all types of vital info. 

Screenshots by Jason Cipriani/CNET

Just how a lot time is your child spending utilizing the phone?

When you open the Family Link app, you can see the situation of your child’s Android phone or pill, a fast overview of time spent in its high apps and the day’s bedtime setting. Tap on any of the playing cards within the feed to view extra info or modify settings. 

For instance, you may set the phone to lock itself at your child’s bedtime, after which unlock within the morning to stop middle-of-the-night gaming periods. 

To management total display time, set a day by day time, which may be personalized by the day of the week. 

You also can set app cut-off dates, like 60 minutes in Fortnite every day, or block particular apps with just some faucets. It’s all actually easy to make use of and perceive. 

I counsel deciding on every totally different card and exploring its respective settings and capabilities. There’s rather a lot within the Family Link feed, but it surely’s damaged down into intuitive sections which can be straightforward to navigate. 


You can management rather a lot on an Android phone with Family Link. 

Screenshots by Jason Cipriani/CNET

There are extra superior settings, too

In the feed is another choice labeled Manage Settings. This is the place you will go to manage whether or not permission is required earlier than an app may be bought, content material restrictions for web sites in Chrome and enforcement of filters in Google Search. 

You’ll additionally have the ability to view any and all apps put in on the Android machine, and block an app if it’s worthwhile to. 

The Location part will present you the place your kid’s phone is so long as it is turned on and linked to Wi-Fi or a mobile community. Your youngster will get an alert on the phone once you view its location. Think of it as a method of constructing belief and opening a line of communication between the 2 of you. 

Once you are snug with the period of time your child is spending on an Android phone or pill, take a couple of minutes to learn all you can about Android 10. We also have a information to walk you through all the fancy new Android 10 gestures and improved parental controls.

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Tarun Banerjee

Professional Web Designer & Developer,Expert in SEO & Digital Market, Founder of Tech Hunt.

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