TechCrunch - Google has just one-upped Apple on mobile in a significant way: today the company today announced the launch of Family Link, an application for parents that lets them establish a child’s first Google account, as well as utilize a series of parental controls to manage and track screen time, daily limits, device “bedtimes,” and which apps kids can use.

While all the major mobile device providers – Apple, Google, and Amazon included – offer parental controls on their devices – Family Link is different because it’s a two-party system. Instead, it works more like the third-party parental control and monitoring software already on the market, where an app installed on a parent’s device is used to configure settings and keep an eye on kids’ digital behavior.

For the system to work, Family Link requires that both parent and child use Android. The parent will first download the Family Link mobile app to their own device, running Android KitKat (4.4) or higher. An iOS version is not yet available, says Google.

From this app, parents will set up the child’s Google account. It’s designed to be used for those children under the age of 13, Google notes. [read more]

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