Home > Parental Control Software > Best Parental Control App UK 2024: Secure Bliss! πŸ‡¬πŸ‡§

Best Parental Control App UK 2024: Secure Bliss! πŸ‡¬πŸ‡§

best parental control app uk

⏳ Do you want to skip the read and get right to my top pick? The best Parental Control App available in the UK is Qustodio

Introduction to my Top Picks for Keeping Kids Safe Online

In today's digital age, online safety is a paramount concern for parents, making the choice of a parental control app an important decision. With a range of options available in the UK, these apps offer features that help monitor and manage a child's online activity. I consider it essential to find a balance between safeguarding children and allowing them the freedom to explore and learn from technology.

Navigating through the various parental control technologies can be overwhelming. Each app comes with its own set of tools geared towards filtering content, limiting screen time, and tracking location. I believe that understanding these features and how they align with your family's needs is the cornerstone of protecting your children online. Additionally, the ease of setting up and using these controls can greatly influence the effectiveness of the chosen app.

Key Takeaways

  • Parental control apps are crucial for managing and monitoring children's online activities.
  • Finding the right app involves evaluating features that suit your family's specific needs.
  • Effective use of these apps hinges on ease of setup and a balanced approach to online safety.

Quick Comparison Table for the Best Parental Control App UK

App NameKey FeaturesPlatform CompatibilityPricing Model
πŸ₯‡ QustodioComprehensive monitoring, web filtering, time limitsiOS, Android, Windows, MacFreemium; from Β£35/year

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πŸ₯ˆ Norton FamilyWeb, time, and search supervision with location trackingiOS, Android, WindowsFreemium; from Β£30/year

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πŸ₯‰mSpyDetailed device monitoring, including calls, texts, and social mediaiOS, AndroidFrom Β£30/month

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EyeZySocial media monitoring, keystroke capture, location trackingiOS, AndroidFrom Β£35/month

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Net NannyReal-time internet filtering, screen time managementiOS, Android, Windows, MacFrom Β£50/year

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Google Family LinkManage apps, track screen time, lock devices remotelyiOS, AndroidFree
MobicipScreen time limits, app blocker, internet filteriOS, Android, Windows, MacFreemium; from Β£40/year

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CanopySexting prevention, screen time management, web filteringiOS, AndroidFreemium; from Β£8/month

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AuraCybersecurity protection, family location sharingiOS, AndroidFrom Β£10/month

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BarkMonitors texts, emails, and 30+ social platforms for safety issuesiOS, AndroidFrom Β£40/year

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OurPactApp blocking, screen time schedules, family locatoriOS, AndroidFreemium; from Β£2/month

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FamilyTimeApp blocker, internet filter, time limits, geofencingiOS, AndroidFrom Β£25/year

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BoomerangIndividual app controls, screen time limitsiOS, AndroidFreemium; from Β£12/year

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Kaspersky Safe KidsScreen time management, GPS safe zones, app use monitoringiOS, Android, Windows, MacFree; Premium from Β£15/year

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Top Parental Control Apps Overview

a smartphone displaying the top parental control apps, with a lock symbol and a child safety icon, surrounded by a protective shield

In the UK, selecting the right parental control app involves finding a perfect blend of web filtering, location tracking, and screen time management. With options ranging from free versions to premium subscriptions, these apps cater to various devices including Android, iOS, Mac, and Windows, and often provide insightful activity reports to ensure children's online safety. Here's a closer look at some leading contenders:

1. Qustodio

Overview: Offers a well-rounded suite of monitoring tools, including detailed web filtering and time management.

  • Pros: Extensive device compatibility; comprehensive activity reporting.
  • Cons: Premium features require a subscription.
  • Pricing: Freemium; starts annually from Β£35.

2. Norton Family

Overview: Known for its stringent web filters and robust location tracking, ideal for families using Windows.

  • Pros: Effective screen time management; works well on Android and iOS.
  • Cons: Some advanced features locked behind premium version.
  • Pricing: Freemium; from Β£30/year.

3. mSpy

Overview: Provides in-depth device monitoring, including calls, texts, and social media activity.

  • Pros: Detailed activity tracking; user-friendly interface.
  • Cons: Higher price point compared to other apps.
  • Pricing: From Β£30/month.

4. EyeZy

Overview: Specializes in social media monitoring and keystroke capturing for comprehensive oversight.

  • Pros: Robust tracking features; intuitive design.
  • Cons: Premium pricing for full functionality.
  • Pricing: From Β£35/month.

5. Net Nanny

Overview: Celebrated for its real-time content filtering and customization options.

  • Pros: Cross-platform support; user-friendly.
  • Cons: Full feature set requires subscription.
  • Pricing: From Β£50/year.

6. Google Family Link

Overview: Offers seamless management for Google accounts, focusing on app management and screen time.

  • Pros: Free to use; integrates well with Android devices.
  • Cons: Functionality on iOS may be limited.
  • Pricing: Free.

7. Mobicip

Overview: Features include YouTube and app monitoring, offering a balance of oversight and flexibility.

  • Pros: Versatile control over apps and internet; good for multiple devices.
  • Cons: Premium features behind subscription.
  • Pricing: Freemium; from Β£40/year.

8. Canopy

Overview: Stands out for its sexting prevention and screen time management features.

  • Pros: Innovative text monitoring; easy to use.
  • Cons: Advanced features like sexting prevention require paid version.
  • Pricing: Freemium; from Β£8/month.

9. Aura

Overview: Combines parental controls with cybersecurity measures, including SOS alerts.

  • Pros: Enhanced digital security features; location sharing.
  • Cons: Some parental controls are basic compared to dedicated apps.
  • Pricing: From Β£10/month.

10. Bark

Overview: Monitors over 30 social platforms for potential safety issues, offering comprehensive digital safety.

  • Pros: Extensive monitoring capabilities; alerts for concerning interactions.
  • Cons: Limited free version; full features necessitate subscription.
  • Pricing: From Β£40/year.

Navigating through these options reveals a diverse array of tools designed to suit different needs and preferences, from comprehensive monitoring solutions like mSpy and EyeZy to free and integrated options like Google Family Link. The key is finding an app that not only fits your budget but also provides the level of oversight you deem necessary for your child's online safety.


Understanding Parental Controls

a child using a tablet, with a parent setting up parental control app on the device

As a tech expert, I understand that the digital world presents both opportunities and challenges, especially for our children. Let me guide you through the essential aspects of parental controls and how they can ensure a safer online environment for your kids.

Key Features of Parental Controls

Parental controls offer several critical features to help monitor and protect children online. Web filtering ensures that kids are not exposed to harmful or inappropriate content, and app blocking allows parents to prevent access to unsuitable applications. Time limits can be set to manage the amount of time children spend on devices, promoting healthier time management habits. Geofencing is a feature that alerts parents when their child enters or leaves a designated geographical area. Content filtering and safe search functionalities bolster these controls by filtering out potential risks.

Importance of Online Safety for Children

With the prevalence of the internet and social media, children can be exposed to numerous risks such as cyberbullying and inappropriate content. Ensuring online safety is crucial as it can affect a child's mental health and development. Parental control software is designed to create a secure online experience and offer parents peace of mind.

Types of Parental Control Software

Parental control tools vary; they can be standalone mobile apps, integrated into antivirus solutions, or come as part of a VPN service. These platforms allow for personalized profiles for each child, adapting to their needs based on age and maturity. This device management is critical as it offers tailored protection across various devices and operating systems.

The Evolution of Screen Time Management

The approach to managing screen time has evolved significantly. Gone are the days when it was just about limiting hours spent on a device. Now, screen time management includes scheduling specific times for device use and using analytics to track and foster healthier digital habits. Parental control software has become more sophisticated, allowing for more nuanced time management that contributes to a balanced lifestyle for our kids.

By embracing these tools and understanding their capabilities, parents can significantly enhance the safety and well-being of their children in the digital realm.


Choosing the Right App for Your Family

a family sitting together, with a tablet in the center displaying various parental control apps. they are discussing and comparing different options

When selecting a parental control app for my family, I focus on finding the right balance between keeping my kids safe and respecting their privacy. Here are the crucial factors I look into.

Factors to Consider When Selecting an App

Compatibility: The first thing I check is whether the app works across all devices my family uses. This includes iOS for Apple products, Android for most other smartphones, Windows for PCs, and macOS for Macs. Compatibility with Chromebook is also a plus, ensuring a comprehensive device management system.

Features: A good parental control app for me should offer a variety of features such as GPS tracking, web filtering, app blocking, and time controls. Also, I look for the ability to monitor activities across different platforms, whether it's on mobile phones or computers.

Customization and User Profiles

Customization is key. I prefer apps that allow creating individual profiles for each of my kids. This way, the content and usage limitations can grow with them, allowing for age-appropriate monitoring. Also, it helps when I can tailor the settings based on their individual needs and the types of technology they use.

Parental Control Apps and Privacy

Privacy policies are non-negotiable. The app must use secure https connections and have a clear policy on data usage and storage. I avoid apps that seem to overreach, as protecting my kids' data is just as important as overseeing their online activities. A robust antivirus and VPN features are additional advantages that I look for.

Installation and Ease of Use

The user experience is critical; hence, an app with straightforward ease of installation is essential. I prefer apps that offer clear instructions and don't require extensive tech knowledge to set up. Additionally, post-installation, the app should be intuitive for both me and my kids to use on a daily basis.


Setting Up and Using Parental Controls

a smartphone with a parental control app open on the screen, showing various settings and options for monitoring and restricting usage

In establishing a safe digital environment for our children, the effective use of parental control apps is crucial. These tools empower me to guide and protect my family's online experience.

Creating Effective Screen Time Limits

Screen Time Limits play a pivotal role in managing how long my children spend on their devices. By setting specific hours for study, play, and sleep, I ensure a balanced daily routine. For example, I can limit game use during homework hours to prioritize education.

Monitoring and Managing Online Activities

With a monitoring app, it's possible to oversee the online activities of my children, assuring their internet use is healthy and age-appropriate. This includes content monitoring and social media monitoring, which give me insights into the type of content they access online.

Location Tracking and Geofencing Features

Using location tracking and geofencing, I can know my child's location in real-time and get alerts if they leave a designated safe area. This is especially useful through a GPS enabled companion app on my phone.

Ensuring Safe Browsing with Web Filters

Web filtering features including safe search, filter out inappropriate content, thus maintaining online safety. These filters can be adjusted as my kids grow, modifying the age restrictions accordingly.

App Blocking and Time Restrictions

I can set time limits on specific apps, ensuring device use is productive and doesn't interfere with sleep or study. App blocking and time restrictions are vital when I need to enforce these rules.

Reporting and Alerts for Parents

Activity reports and real-time alerts are indispensable. They inform me of my child's device use patterns and if any restricted activities are attempted, allowing for immediate intervention if necessary.

Advanced Features and Controls

The advanced features in parental control services often include the ability to pause device use, track calls and texts, and even monitor downloads. I utilize these tools to gain a comprehensive overview of my child's digital life.

Each feature mentioned plays a specific role in shaping a secure and balanced online journey for our children. Utilizing these aspects in harmony with one another forms the backbone of a robust parental control service.


Comparing Parental Control App Features

a smartphone with a parental control app displayed on the screen, showing various features such as website blocking, app usage monitoring, and screen time management

When considering the best parental control app in the UK, it's crucial to analyze subscription costs, platform compatibility, customer support, and independent ratings to ensure we choose a solution that provides the best value and meets our needs.

Subscription Costs and Value for Money

Subscription pricing varies considerably among the top parental control apps. For budget-conscious users, some apps offer a basic annual subscription starting at around Β£30, while premium offerings with extensive features can exceed Β£100 annually. It's imperative to assess whether the higher cost equates to more substantial benefits. Services like Qustodio offer a comprehensive set of features, which can justify their higher pricing tier.

Cross-Platform Compatibility

A top parental control app must work seamlessly across various devices. I find that compatibility with Android, iOS, macOS, and Windows is a standard expectation among users. Apps like NetNanny and Norton Family stand out for their excellent cross-platform functionality. This flexibility ensures that regardless of the devices my family uses, I can rely on consistent parental control measures.

Customer Support and Resources

Effective customer support and help resources are pivotal for a positive user experience. I look for services that provide multiple support channels, including email, phone, and live chat. A comprehensive money-back guarantee is also an indicator of a company's confidence in their app's performance. TheOneSpy, for example, is known for its impeccable customer support reputation.

Independent Reviews and Ratings

Finally, independent reviews and ratings are valuable for unbiased insights. These reviews focus on user experience, app performance, and how an app stacks up against its competitors. Considering the UK market, apps that are consistently rated best for their comprehensive monitoring and intuitive design are typically the most reliable choices.


Best Practices for Parents

In guiding our children through the digital world, we must balance supervision with the freedom they need to grow. By being both proactive and supportive, we can set the stage for responsible and safe internet usage.

Balancing Restrictions with Trust

Trust is the bedrock of any healthy parent-child relationship. I implement time management strategies that allow my children to explore online within clear boundaries. I’ve set up time restrictions on their devices, ensuring that device use doesn't interfere with their sleep, studies, or family time. Yet, I make sure to explain the reasons behind these limits, fostering trust and understanding rather than mere obedience.

Discussing Internet Safety with Your Kids

Communicating about online safety is an ongoing conversation in my family. I make it a point to have regular, open discussions with my kids about the potential risks online. Together, we have configured the safe search settings on their devices. By involving them in the decision-making process, they feel more responsible for their online behavior and choices.

Managing Technology Use in the Family

Coordinating technology management within the family requires a clear plan. We've created a family technology profile that outlines what kind of digital content is appropriate, and I ensure that all devices are equipped with comprehensive parental control apps, such as those highlighted as the best by authoritative sources. This helps in keeping track of their activities without being intrusive.

Supporting Children's Mental Health Online

I’ve learned that an important aspect of parenting is supporting my children's mental health in the online realm. The exposure to cyberbullying and content promoting depression can be very harmful. Hence, I stay engaged with their online interests and peers and encourage them to speak up about any negative experiences. I seek to be a source of support and guidance, ensuring that their digital engagements are contributing positively to their wellbeing.


Conclusion & Personal Recommendation

a smartphone with a parental control app displayed on the screen, surrounded by a child's toys and books

In evaluating the various parental control apps available in the UK for 2024, I've carefully considered factors like user-friendliness, features, and value for money. Each app has its own strengths, catering to different needs and preferences.

I personally recommend mSpy for comprehensive oversight. Its ability to monitor a vast range of activities is impressive. For those whose main concern is social media surveillance, EyeZy offers specialized tools that are particularly effective.

Parents prioritizing time limitations on screen usage might find the advanced scheduling features of an app like Qustodio to be more aligned with their needs. It's one of the top picks despite the higher price point because of the extensive controls and monitoring capabilities it provides.

Lastly, for a more budget-friendly choice that doesn't skimp on essential features, considering Kaspersky Safe Kids could be wise. Its web and game filtering are robust and reliable.

My advice is to identify the specific features that will best serve your family's needs and make an informed decision from there. A well-chosen parental control app can provide not just peace of mind but also foster an environment for responsible digital behavior.


Frequently Asked Questions

a smartphone with a parental control app open on the screen, with a list of frequently asked questions displayed

In this section, I will address some of the most common queries UK parents have when searching for the best parental control apps. From device-specific recommendations to cost concerns, I'll provide straightforward insights to assist you in making informed decisions for your family's digital safety.

What are the top-rated parental control apps available in the UK for iOS devices?

For iOS devices, Qustodio is often recommended for its user-friendly interface and comprehensive monitoring features. It allows UK parents to set screen time limits, track location, and filter online content. Additionally, NetNanny is known for its effective YouTube monitoring and web filtering capabilities.

How can I find a reliable parental control app for Android that is suitable for UK users?

UK parents looking for a reliable parental control app for Android can consider Qustodio, known for its extensive features, including app and game blocking. It is praised for its ease of setup and ability to monitor children's online activities.

Are there any parental control apps that allow monitoring of a child's text messages on an iPhone?

Certain apps like Bark offer the ability to monitor a child's text messages on an iPhone. They enable parents to keep an eye on what their children are texting about, ensuring their communication is safe and appropriate.

Can I monitor my teenager's phone activity with a free parental control app in the UK?

While free parental control apps are available, they often come with limited features. For comprehensive monitoring, including app usage and web browsing history, parents might need to invest in a paid service. However, some apps do offer free basic versions that can be sufficient for minimal monitoring needs.

What are the best options for free parental control apps on Samsung devices in the UK?

Samsung devices in the UK can utilize the in-built Samsung Kids mode for basic parental controls. For more extensive features without cost, parents can explore free versions of apps such as Norton Family that may offer limited functionality but still provide some level of monitoring and restrictions.

Which is more suitable for UK parents: Bark or Qustodio, and what are their key differences?

For UK parents, the choice between Bark and Qustodio will depend on specific needs. Bark specializes in social media and text monitoring, whereas Qustodio offers a broader range of device management features. Reviewing their specific functions and plans can help determine which aligns best with your family's requirements.


In my search, I focus on providing accurate, latest, and user-friendly information. By keeping within these boundaries, I facilitate informed decisions on parental control applications relevant to users in the UK.

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