In today’s digital age, parents face the difficult task of monitoring their kids’ online activities. With smartphones and tablets everywhere, it can be challenging to control what content your children access. This is where parental control apps like Heimdall come in handy.
Heimdall is a parental control app that allows you to monitor your kids’ device usage, block inappropriate content, and limit screen time. While it has some useful capabilities, Heimdall also has limitations compared to other parental control apps.
In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore everything you need to know about Heimdall parental control.
Let’s get started understanding this parental control tool.
What is Heimdall Parental Control?
Heimdall is a parental monitoring app created by Paul Le Tallec, a French developer and father who wanted more control over his kids’ digital habits.
The Heimdall app allows parents to:
- Block access to apps
- Set time limits for app usage
- Monitor texts and calls
- Filter web content and block websites
- View location history
- Manage contacts
While Heimdall offers useful parental controls, it also has some significant limitations compared to leading competitors which we’ll cover later in this guide.
How Does Heimdall Parental Control Work?
Heimdall works by giving parents remote access to monitor and control their child’s Android device. Here’s an overview of how it functions:
- Install the app – Download and install the Heimdall app on your child’s device. Make sure to enable necessary device permissions.
- Create an account – On your own device, create a Heimdall parent account using an email and password.
- Link devices – Use your Heimdall parent account to connect to your child’s device by scanning a QR code.
- Configure controls – Through the parent dashboard, you can now configure app blocking, time limits, filters, etc based on your needs.
- Monitor activity – View reports on your child’s texts, calls, web history, app usage and location to stay informed.
- Update restrictions – Change settings and restrictions as needed to adjust levels of control.
That’s the basic way Heimdall enables remote parental supervision through an online dashboard.
Pros and Cons of Heimdall
Before diving into features, let’s look at some of the key advantages and disadvantages of this particular parental control app:
- Simple app blocking
- Daily usage limits
- Built-in web filters
- Affordable pricing
- Easy to set up
- No keyword alerts
- Can be uninstalled by child
- No social media monitoring
- Limited to Android
- No geofencing capabilities
As you can see, while Heimdall offers some solid capabilities for basic parental controls, it lacks some advanced features found in leading competitors.
Now let’s explore the key features Heimdall provides to give you better insight into its options and limitations:
- Block apps entirely or set daily time limits
- Preloaded app profiles for quick configuration
- Block system apps like device settings or app store
- Enable SafeSearch filtering
- Block web content by category like gambling, drugs, etc
- Add custom website blocking
- Monitor web history
Call & Text Monitoring
- View call logs and durations
- Read SMS messages content
- Block phone numbers
- Set daily screen time allowance
- Schedule permitted usage times
- Temporarily pause restrictions
- Check location history
- View location on map
- Manage contacts
- Export activity reports
- Supports multiple child profiles
- Emergency bypass code
As you can see, Heimdall provides a solid set of core parental control functions. However, it lacks capabilities like social media monitoring, keyword alerts, geofencing and more advanced features found in other apps.
How to Set Up Heimdall Parental Controls
Installing and configuring Heimdall is a straightforward process:
- Download and install the Heimdall app on your child’s Android device. Accept requested permissions.
- On your own device, visit the Heimdall website and sign up for a parent account.
- Open the Heimdall app on your child’s device and log in using your new parent account credentials.
- Tap the QR code scan option. Using your parent device, scan the QR code to link the accounts.
- On your parent dashboard, tap “Add a child” to create your kid’s profile.
- Select your desired restrictions for apps, web filtering, time limits and other preferences.
- Ensure the VPN is enabled on your child’s device for filtering to work correctly.
- Test the restrictions by having your child attempt to access blocked apps or sites.
- Make any adjustments needed to get the right levels of control configured.
Be sure to talk to your child and explain the new rules. Ongoing communication is key to making parental control work smoothly.
Heimdall Pricing and Plans
Heimdall offers two subscription plans:
- Basic – $4.17/mo or $49.99/year. Includes core controls like app blocking, web filtering, time limits and monitoring.
- Premium – $8.33/mo or $99.99/year. Adds advanced features like contacts management, periodic location tracking and exported activity reports.
Heimdall does not offer a free version, but the Basic plan is affordable for most families. Discounts are available for annual subscriptions.
Before choosing a plan, review the feature comparison carefully to ensure you are comfortable with the limitations of Heimdall’s free offering compared to competitors.
Heimdall vs. Other Parental Control Apps
How does Heimdall compare against some other top parental control apps and services? Here is a quick overview:
|Heimdall||Android||$4-8/mo||App blocking, web filtering, time limits, basic monitoring|
|Qustodio||Multi||$4-8/mo||Social monitoring, advanced filters, panic button, family locator|
|Bark||Multi||$9-14/mo||Text & email alerts, web/social monitoring, custom rules|
|Famisafe||Multi||$8-12/mo||Geo-fencing, social media oversight, screen recording, distraction-free learning|
|Net Nanny||Multi||$6-12/mo||Cross-platform support, pornography blocking, profanity filters, supports iPhone parental controls|
|Disney Circle||Router||$7/mo||Device-level and network-wide filtering, advanced analytics, integrates with leading voice assistants|
|McAfee Safe||Multi||$3-8/mo||Tracks on/off times, enforces age limits for apps, robust web filtering|
|Norton||Multi||$50/yr||Leadong security software provider, blocks unsuitable sites, sets time allowances, location tracking|
As you can see, platforms like Qustodio, Bark and Famisafe tend to offer stronger social media oversight, advanced alert options and location tracking compared to Heimdall. Consider both your needs and budget when selecting parental control software.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are answers to some common questions about Heimdall:
What devices does Heimdall support?
Heimdall only works on Android smartphones and tablets. It does not support iOS, Windows, MacOS or gaming consoles.
Can kids uninstall or remove Heimdall?
Yes, tech-savvy kids can potentially uninstall apps and bypass restrictions. Locking the device via your mobile provider is the most surefire way to prevent tampering.
Does Heimdall show texts on child’s phone?
No. Heimdall allows parents to view SMS messages and call logs remotely through the online dashboard. It does not display this monitoring on the child’s device.
Can Heimdall monitor WhatsApp or Snapchat?
No. Heimdall cannot see messages sent within social media apps, chat programs or encrypted messaging platforms. It only monitors standard SMS text messages.
Does Heimdall work when the phone is offline?
No. The child’s device needs an internet connection for parents to view activity through the Heimdall dashboard. Some restrictions will still apply offline, but monitoring does not.
Can parents read emails?
No. Heimdall does not have visibility into emails, only web browsing activity. For email monitoring, a more robust parental control service is required.
Does Heimdall drain the phone battery faster?
Heimdall should not noticeably impact battery life. The app runs efficiently in the background. Enabling battery saver mode can offset any minor battery drain.
Key Takeaways on Heimdall
Heimdall parental control provides a solid set of basic monitoring and restriction capabilities. Key highlights include:
- Affordable pricing starting at $4/month
- Remote access allows parent controls from your own device
- Can block apps, monitor texts, filter websites and set time limits
- Easy to set up on child’s Android device
- Does not offer more advanced features like social media monitoring or geofencing
While Heimdall compares well against other entry-level parental control apps, parents looking for robust social oversight, location tracking and advanced alerts may want to consider more full-featured services.
Carefully evaluate your specific needs and your child’s technical abilities when selecting parental control software. Proper configuration and ongoing communication with your child can help ensure success. With a balanced approach, these tools can help protect kids while allowing age-appropriate independence.