Parental monitoring apps like Turbo Spy allow parents to keep tabs on their kids' online activities. But how does Turbo Spy stack up against competitors? This comprehensive review will give you the full scoop.
Turbo Spy Overview
Turbo Spy is a relatively new phone monitoring app created by Anthropic. It markets itself as a “turbo speed” app that helps parents monitor their children's devices.
The app operates through remote access to retrieve data like texts, calls, locations, videos, and social media activities from Android and iOS devices. All this information uploads to an online dashboard for easy parental viewing.
Parents can keep watch over their kids' phones without ongoing physical access after the initial setup. Turbo Spy runs in stealth mode, making it difficult for children to detect its presence.
- Track GPS locations
- View call logs
- Read text messages and social media chats
- Monitor installed apps
- View photos/videos
- Track web browsing history
- Remotely lock device
- One-time fee ($69.99)
Now let's take a deeper look at how well Turbo Spy works for monitoring Android and iPhone devices.
Using Turbo Spy on Android Phones
I tested Turbo Spy on a Samsung Galaxy S20+ to see how it performed on Android. The setup process was quick and straightforward following the instructions:
- Email the download link from Turbo Spy to the target Android device.
- Open the link on that device and follow the prompts to install.
- Enter the license key when required.
- Log into the Turbo Spy control panel on your own device to ensure proper connection.
Once installed, the app provided excellent visibility into the target phone’s activities while remaining undetectable. I could easily view private messages, GPS locations, call logs, browser history, and media files through the dashboard.
The social media monitoring functionality stood out in my testing. I could see private messages and posts in apps like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and WhatsApp.
Whenever the target phone received a text or notification, I got an alert on the dashboard. This allowed me to stay updated in real-time without constantly checking the target device.
Overall, Turbo Spy performed smoothly on Android with no issues. The stealth monitoring capabilities make it a compelling choice for parents who want remote access without their child’s knowledge.
Turbo Spy App Android Compatibility
Turbo Spy supports Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) through Android 11. It’s compatible with devices from major manufacturers like Samsung, Google, LG, Motorola, and HTC. Specific tested devices include:
- Samsung Galaxy S7 – S22
- Google Pixel 2 – 6
- LG G3 – G8
- Motorola Moto E – G Power
- HTC U11 – U20
As long as you have a fairly modern Android device, Turbo Spy should work well. It may not support outdated operating systems.
Using Turbo Spy on iPhones
I also tested Turbo Spy on an iPhone 13 to evaluate its iOS monitoring capabilities. The installation only required the one-time physical access without needing the device again later.
Turbo Spy provided detailed insights into the target iPhone activities through the online dashboard. I could view private messages, GPS locations, call logs, Safari browsing history, installed apps, photos, and more.
One handy test was deleting messages on the target iPhone then checking the dashboard. Turbo Spy still displayed those deleted messages, showcasing its ability to retrieve data even if the user tries to hide it.
Overall, Turbo Spy worked just as seamlessly on iOS as it did on Android. The remote access allows parents to monitor an iPhone without ongoing physical possession after the initial install.
Turbo Spy App iPhone Compatibility
Turbo Spy is compatible with all iOS versions to date. It works on:
- iPhone 5 – 13
- iPad (all models)
You don’t need to jailbreak the iPhone or iPad to use Turbo Spy. As long as the device runs a standard iOS firmware version, the app should install and run normally.
Turbo Spy Features
Now let’s explore some of the standout features packed into Turbo Spy.
Text Message Monitoring
Turbo Spy lets parents read every text message sent or received on the target device. You can view new messages in real-time as well as older messages.
It even retrieves deleted texts in most cases, thwarting kids who try to hide conversations.
Social Media Monitoring
As mentioned earlier, one of Turbo Spy’s biggest perks is its social media monitoring capabilities. You can read private messages and see posts in apps like:
This allows parents to ensure kids aren't exposed to bullying or inappropriate content on social platforms.
GPS Location Tracking
The GPS tracking feature shows the target device's real-time location within a few feet. It also saves a history of previous locations that you can review.
Parents can see where their kids are when they claim to be at a friend's house or check where they go after school.
Web and App Usage Monitoring
Turbo Spy records which websites the target device visits in Chrome, Safari, and other browsers. The browsing history list provides deep insights into your child's interests and online activities.
You can also view every app installed on the target device. This helps you identify any risky apps your child may have downloaded.
Media File Access
Turbo Spy lets parents look through photos, videos, GIFs, and other media files saved on the target device. This can help protect kids from exposure to inappropriate imagery online.
You can also check camera rolls for concerning photos kids may be sending or receiving from others.
Call Log Visibility
The call logging feature shows all incoming and outgoing calls on the target device. You can see the contact names, numbers, call durations, and timestamps.
This gives parents visibility into who their kids are calling and receiving calls from regularly.
If your child loses their device, you can remotely lock it through Turbo Spy. This prevents strangers from accessing private data if the phone falls into the wrong hands.
Turbo Spy also allows you to remotely delete itself from the target device. This removes all traces of the app if your child starts questioning its presence.
Turbo Spy Pricing
Rather than a subscription, Turbo Spy uses a simple one-time fee model. You just pay the single $69.99 charge upfront for lifetime access.
This one-time pricing makes Turbo Spy more affordable long-term than competitors that require monthly or yearly subscriptions.
You can add on extended customer support for an extra fee if desired. But the basic package already includes free lifetime software updates.
Pros and Cons
Turbo Spy Pros
- Comprehensive features like social media and GPS monitoring
- Affordable one-time pricing structure
- User-friendly online dashboard
- Compatible with latest Android and iOS versions
- Excellent stealth mode hiding it from kids
- Free lifetime software updates
Turbo Spy Cons
- Lacks computer monitoring capabilities
- Cannot record phone calls
- Physical access to device required for initial install
- Shorter track record than some competitors
How Does Turbo Spy Compare?
Turbo Spy has powerful monitoring capabilities for Android and iPhone devices. But how does it stack up to other top contenders in the space like Eyezy and FlexiSPY?
Turbo Spy vs. Eyezy
Eyezy is another highly rated phone monitoring app with robust features like:
- Social media monitoring
- Location tracking
- Remote media access
- Alerts for arriving/leaving locations
Both apps offer similar functionality for reading kids' texts and tracking locations. Eyezy edges out with its screen recording capability and geofencing alerts in all pricing tiers.
However, Eyezy requires monthly subscriptions while Turbo Spy charges a one-time fee. For budget-conscious parents, Turbo Spy provides better long-term value.
Turbo Spy vs. FlexiSPY
FlexiSPY is one of the most full-featured monitoring apps available. It can record calls, remotely turn on a device’s microphone, capture screenshots, etc.
But FlexiSPY’s premium capabilities come at a steep price. Their monthly plans cost between $68-$199 which adds up quickly.
Most parents don't require advanced call recording or screenshot capture. For basic monitoring needs, Turbo Spy provides all the essentials at a much lower lifetime cost.
Turbo Spy vs. Spyzie
Spyzie competes directly with Turbo Spy in the mid-range monitoring app market. It offers a similar mix of call logs, messaging, and location tracking.
Spyzie uses a monthly subscription model though, creating a higher long-term cost. It also lacks Turbo Spy's full social media monitoring capabilities across networks like Snapchat.
Overall, Turbo Spy compares very favorably to Spyzie in terms of pricing and features.
What Users Are Saying
We've assessed Turbo Spy's capabilities hands-on, but what are real parents saying after using the app? Overall, Turbo Spy reviews from parents tend to be quite positive:
“Easy to set up and the dashboard is very user-friendly. I like being able to keep tabs on where my daughter is going after school without hovering over her all the time.”
“Turbo Spy makes it so simple to monitor my son's phone and social media accounts. I can sleep better knowing what's going on in his digital life.”
“For the price, Turbo Spy gets the job done on my kid's iPhone. I mainly wanted something affordable to check that she's not talking to creeps online.”
“The location tracking gives me peace of mind when my teen is out with friends. Turbo Spy is worth it just for that feature alone.”
Some users complain about glitches with social media monitoring or installing on certain devices. However, most parents seem satisfied with Turbo Spy's core functionality for the affordable lifetime fee.
The Bottom Line
Turbo Spy delivers reliable monitoring capabilities through an easy-to-use online dashboard. The affordable one-time pricing beats out monthly competitors for long-term savings.
For parents who want standard visibility into texts, locations, calls and social media, Turbo Spy hits the sweet spot. It provides just enough monitoring and remote control without going overboard.
Advanced features like call recording or screenshot capture aren't included. But most parents won't miss them. Overall, Turbo Spy satisfies the essential phone monitoring needs of the average parent at a reasonable price point.
- Turbo Spy allows parents to monitor kids' smartphone activities like calls, texts, locations, and social media.
- The app works on both iPhones and Android phones with basic remote install and management.
- You pay an affordable one-time fee instead of a recurring monthly subscription.
- Turbo Spy provides comprehensive monitoring without advanced (and seldom-used) extras.
- It compares well vs. competitors on pricing and features. Most parents seem happy with Turbo Spy’s capabilities.
- If you need basic visibility into your kids' mobile lives, Turbo Spy delivers good value. It covers the core phone tracking needs for parents.
Frequently Asked Questions About Turbo Spy
Q: What age is appropriate to use Turbo Spy for your child?
A: Most experts recommend only using parental monitoring apps like Turbo Spy for children under 18 living at home. Using it to track adult children or partners raises privacy concerns. Assess your child's maturity before deciding if Turbo Spy is necessary.
Q: Can Turbo Spy see Snapchat messages and pictures?
A: Yes, Turbo Spy can monitor Snapchat private messages, saved photos/videos, and captures of any Snaps without the sender knowing. However, disappearing Snapchat images may not always be recovered after closing.
Q: Does Turbo Spy drain the target phone's battery faster?
A: Turbo Spy is designed to operate in stealth mode without consuming significant device resources. Most users don't report a major impact on battery life. But some extra battery drain is expected with any monitoring app running in the background.
Q: Can I retrieve text messages after uninstalling Turbo Spy?
A: Unfortunately, any data on the target device cannot be accessed through Turbo Spy after uninstalling the app. But you can download a backup of the dashboard data before removing the app.
Q: How long does Turbo Spy store data from the target device?
A: Turbo Spy continuously syncs and stores all data from the monitored device until you uninstall the app. There is no set limit on the dashboard storage duration. You can access months or years of historical data if desired.
Q: Does Turbo Spy work outside the USA?
A: Yes, Turbo Spy functions internationally by remotely syncing data to their cloud servers. As long as you have an internet connection, you can monitor a device from anywhere. But check your local laws before using Turbo Spy abroad.
Q: Can Turbo Spy monitor WhatsApp messages?
A: Yes, Turbo Spy can monitor private messages, media, and calls sent through WhatsApp. It synchronizes WhatsApp data from the target device to provide parents full visibility.
Q: How long does Turbo Spy installation take?
A: The Turbo Spy install process only takes a few minutes in most cases. You just need 5-10 minutes of initial physical access to the target phone to download the app and complete the setup.
Q: Does Turbo Spy have an iPhone version?
A: Yes, Turbo Spy is fully compatible with all modern iPhone models. The same monitoring features work across iOS and Android devices.
Q: Can you read someone's texts without installing software?
A: No, physically installing monitoring software like Turbo Spy is required to read texts remotely. There is no way to retrieve texts from another phone secretly without software.