Have you ever felt unsafe due to the easy access your child gets to the world of the internet? Are you getting increasingly worried that your child will be exposed to something dangerous that could? Something that could negatively affect his or her life. This is a problem more and more parents are beginning to worry about nowadays.
The internet is a big place and not always easy to monitor. However, some companies have taken the first step to making convenient teen monitoring apps. And they make sure these apps are easy to operate. Here we have given the 5 best phone monitoring apps available today.
Top 5 apps for parents to monitor their teen’s phone
NEXSPY is a leading app in the digital stores for both Android and iOS. It is also available on PC and Mac. It has been developed to counter the risks that come with increased access to the internet.
It is a parental phone monitoring app. It easily allows parents to keep tabs on their children. As well as make sure that they are not exposed to anything dangerous. This app is also widely used by employers to track their employees’ activity and ensure they are being productive.
What We Like:
This app is a highly downloaded and well-respected phone monitoring app. This is because NEXSPY comes with a list of features that ensure you can keep an eye on absolutely everything. These features include:
- Phone call log monitoring.
- Access to all contacts stored on the device.
- Access to all inbound and outbound SMS on the phone being tracked.
- Access to all multimedia files stored on the device such as photos and video, including media that has been received through messages.
- Ability to view social media accounts and messages as well as search terms and profile pictures on popular social media apps such as Facebook, Snapchat, WhatsApp, Instagram, etc.
- Access to more apps and deeper functions if the device in question is rooted/jailbroken.
- The app also hides the jailbreak or root on a phone to ensure the user never finds out.
- Access to all installed apps and being able to discreetly take a screenshot of any app at any time.
- Tracking all emails sent and received.
- Geo tracker is used to tracking the location of the user’s device at all times.
- The app has a user-friendly interface which is very important for those users who are approaching a phone tracker app for the first time.
- NEXSPY also has a high standard of privacy as the app can be downloaded on the target phone remotely without the target user realizing after which the app will permanently run in the background where it will never be discovered.
What We Don’t Like:
Despite all the pros, there are still some bad things about NEXSPY. Developers have tried their best to implement this app in a way that is easy to use and understand for everyone. But the setup process is still a bit complicated for many to follow without a guide. This can especially be a problem for parents who want to install a spy app for kids. As they are usually not so tech-savvy and are unable to operate through such complicated settings on their devices.
However, the biggest drawback is the price. This app is not yet free. And it is a tad expensive with the fee reaching from $19 a month to $39 a month. Some still argue that you cannot put too high of a price on child safety. Especially in a time when people are exposed to more and more dangers online every day.
mSpy was launched in 2010 by a London-based tech company. It was first released on iOS where it rapidly gained popularity. It was later launched on both PC and Mac in 2012 then on Google Play in 2016. It has won numerous awards from tech YouTubers over the years.
This app is built like a phone monitoring app. It allows you to keep tabs on anyone from your kids to your employees. It offers responsive and fast customer support as well as a wide range of features. Many of its features are aimed at concerned parents looking to monitor their children and ensure their safety.
What We Like:
This app is an established one owing to its 10+ years of history in the public sphere. It is supported in 180 countries around the world. So you can use it no matter where you are and it comes jam-packed with features. Some of these features include:
- Call log history and call monitoring so you can always see who the user is talking to.
- App monitoring includes a list of all apps and activities in these apps.
- Tracking browser and search history even if it is deleted.
- Social media tracking on popular social media apps through which you can see their chats, calls, messages, and searches.
- Geotracking is useful in tracking the user’s location at any given time.
- Geofencing alerts are given when the user enters a location that you have marked as unsafe.
- Safe zones can also be marked using this app.
- Website blocker to prevent the user from accessing unsavory or dangerous websites and an app blocker is included too.
- SMS messages sent and received on the device can be tracked.
- Photos and videos stored on the device can be freely accessed.
This app also offers a user-friendly experience which is one of the biggest reasons for its popularity today. It has a big focus on safety and security like its competition. It offers remote installation on the target phone and after installation. And continuously runs in the background. All these factors mean that it is highly unlikely this teen monitoring app will be discovered.
What We Don’t Like:
Depending on your location this app may or may not be illegal. It works in over 180 countries and all of these countries have different laws. This is something to consider for many.
mSpy has also been breached in the past once in 2015 and again in 2018. This resulted in user data being leaked online. Since this app deals with very sensitive data like user pictures and videos, call logs, etc this could be a very troubling revelation for many people. The app also requires payment and its only free version is a trial version.
TeenSafe is another highly popular phone tracker app. It is used by over a million parents worldwide. It is a teen monitoring app and is just like its competitors. It offers a long list of useful features that allow concerned parents to keep an eye on their children’s activities. This is to make sure that they are safe at all times.
TeenSafe is available on both iOS and Android. It offers a 7-day free trial after which there is a $14.95 monthly fee. This fee is refundable for 60 days.
What We Like:
Since its release on iOS and Android, this app has become one of the most widely downloaded and used apps on either store. It is perhaps due to the many appealing features it has.
It offers a very simple and easy-to-understand user experience so that parents who are not very good tech-savvy can still use it. They also have a very responsive and helpful customer service team as can be seen in many of their reviews.
They offer a 60-day money-back guarantee which is not present for many of the competitors. Below are some of the features:
- Call tracker to keep an eye on who they’re talking to.
- SMS tracker which gives access to their SMS location and messages sent as well as received.
- Location tracker which gives the device’s coordinates on-demand.
- Geofencing allows you to mark which areas are safe and which aren’t.
- Browser and search history tracking cannot be deleted.
- Social media messaging and activity tracking on the usual big apps i.e. Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, WhatsApp, etc.
These are some of the features available to users of TeenSafe. And best of all is that most of them can be accessed without root on Android and jailbreak on iOS devices. It is also highly secure and can be installed remotely.
What We Don’t Like:
TeenSafe does not have the best track record when it comes to keeping user data safe. In 2018 TeenSafe was breached and the user data of thousands of people was leaked online. Since then the team has largely been unresponsive.
There have even been some reports of the website being disabled for months. This is a problem for people who would like to try their service. But as the website is down they do not issue new subscriptions.
Data breaching is always a serious issue for these applications. Since by purchasing a plan or a subscription you are trusting these companies with your credit card information.
Bark app is another app to monitor kids iPhone and Android phone which has won numerous awards. It is one of the most downloaded apps in its category. It is available on both Google Play and the App Store. It is for parents who are worried about their kids’ internet usage and want to make sure they’re safe at all times.
What We Like:
Bark is laser-focused on child safety and all of its features are built around that philosophy. Using this app parents can ensure the safety of their children. They can help their kids stay safe from cyberbullying, sexual harassment, stalking, doxing, etc. As well as other emotional issues such as suicidal tendencies.
Bark is unique among its peers as it also focuses on mental health. It has an automated system that detects cases of bullying and suicidal ideation on its own. This is because as the website for Bark says “no parent can keep an eye on what their kid is doing online 24/7.”
This app is designed to lighten the workload for parents. As it makes it more feasible to track kids’ online activity while ensuring nothing falls through the cracks.
What We Don’t Like:
This app offers two subscription tiers. A “Bark Premium” tier that includes every feature on the app. And a “Bark Jr” tier which is far cheaper but has fewer features.
The problem is that the cheaper Bark Jr tier contains only rudimentary features. Such as managing screen time and content blockers. While the important features such as countering suicidal ideation and cyberbullying are only available in the higher tier. This makes the lower tier effectively worthless for most parents interested in this product.
Read more: How to Monitor Text Messages on Android?
FamiSafe is a widely lauded and popular phone tracking app. It is available on virtually every major platform including the App Store, Google Play, Windows, Mac, the Amazon Appstore, and the Chrome Store for Chromebooks.
It has a focus on child safety and content blocking. It is useful in maintaining children’s innocence by keeping them away from negative content on the internet.
What We Like:
FamiSafe has a selection of features that will appeal to parents who want to police their child a bit more personal. True to its goal of offering online safety for kids its features include:
- YouTube app control
- Search history
- Browser history
- Content managing
- Access to device location
- Location history
- Screen on time
- Web filter
- Explicit content detection
- Safe search
These are all highly sought-after features in similar apps and FamiSafe offers them all in one convenient package.
This app has also been the recipient of many awards. It has won the National Parenting Centre Seal of Approval, 2020 National Parenting Awards, and the Mom’s Choice Awards just to name a few.
What We Don’t Like:
There have been numerous bugs associated with this app. User reviews frequently mention the content filter blocking words such as “cubes” and “nothing”. Plus a list of other issues that customers frequently face.
Customer support is also not the most responsive on this list. Overall this is another case of weighing trade-offs. As though this app might be a risk to download but it is also one of the cheapest on this list.
How to choose the best phone monitoring app for you
Hidden & undetectable
These apps rely on secrecy to get the job done. Therefore when you are trying to find the best parental control app this factor must be weighed. As many of the common features such as location tracking can be circumvented easily if the target knows that his device has a phone monitoring app installed.
The best apps make sure to always run in the background without ever giving a hint of their presence to the user. Oftentimes these apps offer remote installation.
Web filtering and content managing is another important feature of many of these apps. The best apps make sure to automatically block access to harmful sites or ones that contain viruses. They also offer the option of parents inputting the blocked sites manually.
App monitoring, messaging, and time restrictions
Many of the best spy apps for kids contain these features. Children are known to spend too much time on their devices. This can harm their attention span and attitude. Time restriction and app monitoring is an easy and convenient way for parents to combat this. And they won’t have to spend too much time and energy on this matter.
Another important facet of parenting is knowing where your child is and where he or she is going. Teen monitoring apps often include location reporting. So in case, your child is sneaking off somewhere you will instantly know.
Pricing and platforms
Due to the long list of features, each of these apps contains the constant need for customer support. They are usually way more expensive than the average 1 or 2 dollar app. However, they do not break the bank and offer a nice balance between maintaining a low cost and not cutting out on features.
This is achievable by installing one of the many spy apps for kids which are available on the marketplace and offer a suite of tracking features.
Teenagers’ phones can be monitored using teen monitoring apps. They can track most of the activities on the phone.
This is made possible by the advent of remote installation. It does not require access to the target phone. After installation, the app continues to run in the background where it is invisible.
Yes, this is another feature that has been made possible by the iPhone monitoring apps available on the App Store.