Microsoft has launched a new family safety app for iOS and Android. The app, which has been in testing for a few months now, is designed to allow families manage screen time and app usage.
Using the Family app, parents can now receive reports on their children’s app usage, including how much time is spent on each. They can also set limits on the time to spend on each app with the ability for children to request for an extension.
Microsoft Family safety syncs across Windows, Xbox and Android so that time limits set on the app will also be synced on multiple devices. This will prevent kids from swapping devices in efforts to get extra playing hours on Minecraft or Fortnite. Parents will also be able to block specific apps completely.
Microsoft has also added a set of filters which will limit browsing to kid-friendly sites. The filters work on Microsoft Edge’s browser on Windows, Android and Xbox. Most of the filters and screen time tools are currently limited to Android but the company says it will be bringing them to iPhones soon. There’s an additional tool to even lock any surprise spending on accounts with purchase request emails, helping prevent malicious credit card bills.
FAMILY Safety App can also be used for location sharing among family members. Microsoft has added a location clustering feature which shows that many of the family members are at the same place.
Microsoft 365 subscribers will enjoy an additional feature that will notify them when family members arrive at or leave a location. They will also get a drive safety feature designed to help people develop better driving habits and provide insights on bad behaviour on the road.
The Microsoft Family Safety App is available on Google Play store for Android and Apple App Store for iPhone.