The Complete Guide to Samsung Galaxy Parental Controls

November 26, 2023

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As a parent in the digital age, it’s vital to take steps to keep your kids safe online. With Samsung being one of the most popular smartphone brands, many parents find themselves needing to set up parental controls on Galaxy devices.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk through everything you need to know about enabling parental controls on Samsung Galaxy phones and tablets.

Overview of Samsung Galaxy Parental Control Options

Samsung Galaxy Parental Control Options

There are a few different ways parents can restrict and monitor their child’s Samsung device usage:

  • Samsung’s built-in controls – Basic parental controls through Samsung Kids Mode or tight integration with Google’s Family Link app for more advanced features.
  • Carrier controls – Some additional restrictions may be available through your cellular carrier if the device is branded by them.
  • Third party apps – Robust parental control apps like Qustodio, Norton Family, and more offer enhanced functionality.
  • Family Link app – Google’s parental control app works across Android devices and integrates deeply into Samsung Galaxy phones.

The right approach depends on your child’s age, your technical comfort level, and the level of control you need. We’ll take a detailed look at the pros and cons of each method in this guide.

Using Samsung’s Built-In Parental Controls

Samsung has integrated basic parental control features into their Galaxy devices to help parents manage their kid’s usage and access.

Samsung Kids Mode

Samsung Kids Mode offers a simple way to restrict your child’s access to apps and set time limits. Here’s how to set it up:

  1. Open the notification shade and tap the power icon.
  2. Tap “Kids Mode” to enable it.
  3. Choose a PIN to prevent your child from exiting the mode.
  4. Customize app access, time limits, and other restrictions.

Kids Mode creates a child-friendly space where only permitted apps and content are available. Your child won’t be able to access anything that could be inappropriate. It’s easy to toggle on and off as needed.

However, Kids Mode lacks more advanced features like web filtering or location tracking offered by third party apps. It’s best suited for younger children who just need basic app blocking.

Built-In Parental Controls

For older kids who need more advanced restrictions, Samsung has built-in integration with Google’s Family Link parental control app.

To set it up:

  1. Go to Settings > Digital Wellbeing and Parental Controls.
  2. Tap “Parental Controls” then follow the prompts to download Family Link.
  3. Install Family Link on your child’s device and link their account.
  4. Enable any restrictions like time limits, app blocking, location sharing etc.

Family Link allows things like:

  • Viewing browsing history and blocking websites
  • Setting daily screen time limits
  • Remotely locking device or specific apps
  • Tracking location

The main limitation is that kids over 13 can remove the restrictions if they choose. But for younger children, Samsung’s integration with Family Link provides robust parental controls.

Using Your Carrier’s Parental Controls

If your Samsung Galaxy device is tied to a specific cellular carrier like Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile etc, you may have additional parental control options through their apps.

Carrier family apps like Verizon Smart Family, AT&T Smart Limits, and T-Mobile FamilyMode offer features like:

  • Content filters – Block inappropriate websites
  • Location tracking – See where your kid is on a map
  • Usage limits – Set time restrictions per day/week
  • Block calls and SMS – Filter who they can communicate with

The exact capabilities differ between carriers. And you’ll need an account with that carrier to use their family platform. But if your device is branded by your wireless provider, explore their parental control tools as well.

Third Party Parental Control Apps

For the most flexibility and customization, third party parental control apps are a great option. They work across Android devices and provide enhanced features beyond Samsung’s built-in offering.

Some top options include:

  • Qustodio – Tracks locations, blocks websites and apps, sets time limits, monitors texts, and more.
  • Norton Family – Features web filtering, time management, and location tracking.
  • Kaspersky Safe Kids – Blocks inappropriate apps and sites, monitors usage, and shares locations.
  • MMGuardian – Sets time restrictions, locates kids, and blocks unsuitable content.
  • Spyzie – Tracks locations, monitors texts, logs calls, and manages screen time.
  • FamiSafe – Records browsing history, analyzes app usage, and shares locations.

These parental control apps provide complete visibility and management over your child’s Samsung Galaxy device usage, more than what Samsung’s built-in offering provides.

The advantage of third party apps is the extensive feature set. But the downside is there is usually a monthly subscription fee involved. However, the price may be worth it for the peace of mind.

Detailed Guide to Google Family Link App

google family link

One of the best parental control options for Samsung Galaxy devices is Google’s Family Link app. Since it’s directly integrated into Android, it provides very tight controls and works seamlessly with Samsung phones and tablets.

Let’s take a detailed look at how to set up Family Link and what it can do.

Installing Family Link

Family Link needs to be installed on both the parent’s device and the child’s device.

On your Samsung Galaxy:

  1. Go to Settings > Digital Wellbeing and Parental Controls.
  2. Tap “Set up parental controls” and follow prompts.
  3. Download and install Family Link from the Google Play store.

On your child’s device:

  1. Download and install Family Link from the Google Play store.
  2. Open the app and tap “Get Started“.
  3. Choose “Child” and enter the setup code shown on your parent device.

Once linked, you’ll be prompted to create a Google account for your child that is managed by Family Link. This ties their device usage to the account.

Managing Settings

In the Family Link app on your device, you can configure various restrictions for your child’s Samsung Galaxy phone or tablet:

  • Apps – Approve apps your child can download or install. Block specific apps entirely.
  • Screen time – Set daily limits for overall device usage or per-app limits.
  • Bedtime – Restrict app usage during set bedtime hours.
  • Locations – View real-time location and location history. Get alerts when your child leaves or enters locations.
  • Lock – Remotely lock your child’s device or lock down specific apps.

Adjust these restrictions as needed for your child’s age and responsibility level. Settings can be changed at any time from your device.

Usage Insights

In addition to controls, Family Link gives helpful insights into how your child uses their Samsung device:

  • App usage – See how much time is spent in each app and set limits.
  • Screen time – Check how much time per day is spent on the device overall.
  • Bedtime – Confirm no late night usage past bedtime.
  • Locations – Review location visit history and make sure they weren’t somewhere they shouldn’t be.
  • Locks – See how often remote lockdowns had to be used for discipline.

These usage insights help guide your parental control decisions. You can tighten or loosen restrictions based on actual usage patterns.

Additional Controls

A few other controls Family Link provides:

  • Purchase approvals – Approve any app or in-app purchases your child attempts.
  • Content filters – Block inappropriate apps and websites.
  • YouTube restrictions – Limit YouTube access or restrict channel viewing.
  • Password – Prevent changing the device passcode or screen lock type.

So Family Link offers a comprehensive set of parental controls, far beyond Samsung’s built-in capabilities.

Key Takeaways

To summarize the key points on how to manage your child’s Samsung Galaxy device:

  • Samsung Kids Mode provides basic app and time restrictions.
  • Enable Samsung’s built-in integration with Family Link for robust controls.
  • Check your carrier’s family platform for additional options if available.
  • Third party apps offer the maximum flexibility and customization.
  • Family Link is the best choice for tight integration and powerful restrictions.
  • Adjust settings regularly as your child matures to find the right balance.

Taking the time to set up parental controls helps ensure your child uses their Samsung Galaxy phone or tablet safely. Protect them from inappropriate content and overuse while allowing the benefits technology can bring.

Frequently Asked Questions

Let’s review some common questions about parental controls for Samsung Galaxy devices:

Can I monitor my child’s messages or social media activity?

Not directly through Samsung’s built-in controls. However, many third party apps like Qustodio allow monitoring of texts, call logs, WhatsApp and more.

Do parental controls work on any Samsung Galaxy model?

Most modern Galaxy devices from the last 3-4 years support parental controls through Family Link or third party apps. Very old models may have limited compatibility.

What happens if my child removes the Family Link app?

For kids under 13, Family Link cannot be removed without the parent’s approval. For teens 13+, they can uninstall apps and remove restrictions without consent.

Can my child still text or call me if I restrict their Samsung device?

Yes, you can block usage of all apps while still allowing calls and texts to approved contacts like you and other family.

What content does Family Link block?

Family Link lets you restrict apps based on maturity rating. It uses Google SafeSearch to filter websites and YouTube videos based on inappropriate content.

Do I have to pay extra for parental control apps?

Samsung’s built-in options are free. But most third party parental control apps charge a monthly or annual subscription fee for full access to all features.

Can I manage kids devices across platforms like iOS and Windows?

Family Link only works with Android. But many third party options like Qustodio have apps across all platforms to manage different devices your child uses.

Will setting up parental controls affect my child’s device performance?

There may be a minor impact on factors like battery life or free storage space. But modern Samsung devices have enough computational resources that any decrease in performance should be negligible.

What happens if my child factory resets their Samsung device?

That will remove all parental control apps and restrictions. You’ll need physical access to the device to re-install the apps and set limits again. Keeping your child’s device password protected can help prevent unauthorized factory resets.

Using parental controls takes some effort but helps set healthy limits around your child’s Samsung Galaxy usage. With the right tools and involvement, you can help your kids safely experience the best technology has to offer as they grow up.