Thursday, 8 October 2015

How to make Android Devices safe for kids

Smartphones and Tablets are valuable devices even to kids in offering the smart ways of educating or providing entertainment through learning apps, creative thinking games et al. However, these powerful gadgets can at times result in kids poking through the objectionable content or they unknowingly racking up significant charges on your credit or debit card. Be cautioned to handover your smartphone to your kids.

Fortunately, there are ways to keep you kids and your devices safe while handing over them the Android devices. Here’s how…

1. Restricted Profiles on Tablets

While Android doesn’t provide any notified parental controls built into the OS, it however offers a technique to carry out similar task, at least on tablets. It’s possible to create a secondary restricted profile and decide which apps can be accessed by that user if you’re devices are running on Android 4.3 or newer versions. Set a screen lock to the main profile, to keep your kids away from accessing it, and let them stick to the restricted secondary profile. 

For creating the restricted profile separate from your original, Go to Users from the settings screen, click Add user or profile name, and select the list of apps shown. Few of the apps like Calendar, Docs, Email, and Twitter are automatically blocked by restricted profiles while the other apps let you toggle them on or off.

Accessing this restricted profile is easy. Go to the lock screen, and tap on the user icon and you’ll find an added one listed. Click on that to see the device switching to the restricted profile, which keeps you away from accessing the disallowed apps and options.

2. Smartphone Options

There are no restricted profiles available on Android Smartphones, which maight run on any version of the OS. Since the phones are used for calls and texting, the device owner could miss such things, if the restricted profile access is imposed. Yet, it lets you create a new separate profile, if your phone runs on running Android 5.0+, and it allows you to switch over it anytime like the lock screen or status bar on tabs. It also allows you to disable calls and texts. Tap the icon in status bar to add a new user profile. Go to settings Menu to see a small gear with the profile, and you can tap on it to toggle the calls or SMS on or off.

3. Pinning Apps

The interesting parent-friendly features in Android 5.0 are the app pinning that allows you to access only a single app to the screen, blocking everything else. This option is best when you have to give your device to kids, without requiring you to switch the profile or continuously monitoring their actions.

Go to Settings, and enable the security feature, where you would be allowed to choose a PIN. Use the PIN to unlock the screen. Hit the overview button and tap the tap the pushpin icon shown on the app card if you’re all ready to pin.

4. Playstore Restrictions

The parental controls in Playstore app aren’t just limited to recent Android OS versions fortunately. Slide the navigation screen from the left to access the settings screen and scroll down to use the controls. It’ll give you access to the media restrictions based on the ratings by limiting apps, game downloads, restriction on movies or books with sexual content. You need to know the PIN number to access the settings.

There’s another option “Unknown Sources” in the Security in Settings Menu. Turn off the option as it won’t let your kids download and install apps from outside the Play Store. Such app could introduce malware to your device or contain objectionable content, so turn off the option.

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Techiyogiz is one of start-up Online website of aspiring Engineers who are yet to finish their Graduation.Technology Happenings along with How To and Tips and Tricks of various Technology related matters.

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