Thinking about trying Qustodio to keep your kids’ screen time safe and balanced? Our Qustodio review below explains why it might be the best tool out there for keeping your kids safe on their devices.
As technology becomes increasingly embedded in our daily lives, more children are being given access to smartphones and devices at a young age.
Almost 20% of eight-year-olds had access to their own device, according to a 2022 survey conducted by Common Sense Media.
That number skyrocketed up to 90% by the time kids hit age 18.
If it’s a challenge for mature adults to limit the amount of time they spend online, you can bet it’s even harder to strike a healthy balance with kids.
Perhaps it’s no surprise, then, that only 10% of households interviewed for the 2022 survey claimed that screen time was “never” a source of conflict for their family.
Meanwhile, close to 50% of parents admitted to arguments over device use occurring “frequently” or “once or twice a week.”
There are plenty of reasons parents want to put a cap on the use of online devices.
Too much screen time has been linked to higher levels of anxiety, depression, and insomnia, for one thing, as well as shorter attention spans, greater risk of obesity, and other mental and physical health issues.
More time online also means an increased risk of your child experiencing something negative, whether it’s cyberbullying, hacking, or exposure to inappropriate content.
Many parents also feel that constant technology use makes it harder for their kids to connect with friends face-to-face and pursue meaningful sports, hobbies, and activities in the real world.
For all of these reasons, more and more parents and guardians want to manage and monitor their children’s online activity.
One of the easiest and most comprehensive ways to do that is by using Qustodio, a digital safety app created by former cybersecurity experts.
Qustodio creates an easy way for caretakers to protect their kids and help them navigate the internet as they grow up in the digital generation.
Read our full Qustodio review below to learn about what it has to offer and to find out if it might be a good fit for your family.
Disclosure: Some of the links in this article are affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost for you, we might get a commission if you click the link and purchase.
What is Qustodio?
From safe search to app blocking and daily time limits to monthly activity reporting, Qustodio offers everything you need to monitor your kids' device activity and keep them safe online.
Qustodio is the current market leader in digital safety solutions for children and families.
The first prototype of the app was released in 2011 by cybersecurity coworkers Eduardo Cruz, Josh Gabel, and Josep Gaspar.
The friends had become concerned with the risks posed by the new iPhone 4 and decided to explore ways to help keep their kids safe while still enjoying technology.
Over a decade later, Qustodio has grown by leaps and bounds.
Used in 132 countries by more than 5 million families, Qustodio’s main goal is to help families create a healthy, balanced digital lifestyle for their children starting at a young age.
The company’s mission is to promote the positives of technology on child development while mitigating the risks that come with overexposure.
Read on to learn more about how Qustodio sets your child up for a more positive online experience.
What Does Qustodio Do?
Qustodio provides families with a number of different features that allow you to enjoy peace of mind when it comes to all things tech-related.
Each of these offerings is designed to help your child bypass the negative effects of screen time while still enjoying the internet.
Freedom to Filter
Filtering and blocking unwanted apps, games, and websites is an important step in preventing your child from seeing negative things online.
Qustodio lets adults choose which web categories to block, allow, or allow with notifications.
Parents can flat-out block mature or violent content, while still allowing access to certain games or social media sites with built-in notifications that tell them about their child’s usage.
This flexibility helps keep both parents and kids happy as they find a good balance for their family.
Qustodio also lets you monitor your child’s internet activity in real-time, using the app’s downloadable dashboard.
With the click of a button, you can check your child’s activity timeline to see how long they’ve been spending on different sites.
You can also easily keep an eye on their browsing history, including the media content they’ve watched and the sites they’ve visited.
It’s important for families to promote transparency when it comes to internet usage. The ability to quickly glance at kids’ online activity makes this a simple process.
Qustodio’s dashboard makes it easy to spot anything unusual right away, so that you can edit your filters and discuss safe online habits with your child.
Press Pause & Set Limits
“Five more minutes!”
If you’ve ever dealt with your child pleading for a little more time online, you know how tricky it can be to enforce boundaries.
Qustodio makes it possible to set time limits in advance, so your child’s screen time break will begin automatically.
This makes it harder for kids to push back, and fosters a consistent, balanced outlook on using the internet.
If you need to shut things down spur-of-the-moment, Qustodio also allows you to pause the internet on your child’s device with the pressing of a button.
Maintaining screenless breaks can help your child avoid internet addiction and free up more time for family, creativity, and physical activity.
Screen-free breaks also prevent the dreaded mindless scrolling and binging of content that so often leads to irritation and boredom in the long run.
Know Their Location
Qustodio can also provide peace of mind when your young ones are out of the house.
The app offers a global positioning system that lets you know your child’s location in real time, affording you the ability to see where they are on the map even when you’re not together.
You can save their most frequented locations, like school or a friend’s house, and receive notifications when your child arrives and departs.
Qustodio’s real-time map feature is an excellent way to let older children enjoy a bit more independence and mobility while still making sure they are safe.
Track Texts and Calls
More and more phishing scams are beginning to come via text, which is why Qustodio lets you monitor who is contacting your child.
You can detect and delete suspicious contacts right away, helping prevent your child from being exposed to any breach of privacy.
Guardians can also set a list of blocked numbers to keep unwanted predators or cyberbullies from reaching their children.
Qustodio’s text and call tracking features also let you keep an eye on your child’s digital interactions.
Caretakers can survey the amount of time their child spends talking to a contact, as well the messages they’re sending and receiving.
This is another good touchpoint for promoting healthy, open digital communication between parents and kids.
Reflect on Reports
Qustodio provides you with data reports on your child’s internet activity, so that you can quickly get a read on how they’re using their devices.
Families can peruse daily, weekly, and monthly reports of what their kids are doing online.
Streamlined data reports make it easier to keep track of your child’s digital footprint over time.
Qustodio will also give you real-time alerts if your child is attempting to access a blocked or inappropriate site, so you don’t have to wait until the reports are out to know if they are in harm’s way.
What Does Qustodio Cost?
These comprehensive features make it obvious why Qustodio is such a highly-rated digital safety solution.
However, the app does not come for free. In order to take advantage of all it offers, Qustodio charges members $54.95 for a yearlong Basic Package, which comes out to just under $5.00 per month.
The Basic Package includes games and apps blocking, internet time limits and pausing, web filtering, and location monitoring.
Though Qustodio markets this as simply the “core tools” needed for online safety, the Basic Package actually provides very robust protection against harmful content.
For users who wish to level up, though, the platform also offers a Complete Package at $99.95 a year (or $8.33 per month).
The Complete Package includes all of the tools as the Basic, but also comes with a time limit feature for specific games and apps, as well as the option for call and message monitoring.
In addition, the Complete Package includes “Care Plus” at no extra charge. This gives you priority phone support, ongoing check-ins, personalized help, and is available in English & Spanish.
Qustodio’s Complete Package also offers more customization in the form of personalized alerts, as well as unlimited device connections.
Essentially, for a few dollars more per month, families can shore up their kids’ cybersecurity by a few degrees more while enjoying more customized notifications.
Before taking the plunge, Qustodio offers a free trial that lets potential users test out their premium features before investing in a Complete Package.
Final Thoughts on Qustodio
No two families are going to feel exactly the same way about their children’s internet usage.
One thing is certain, though: all families want to keep their kids safe and help them avoid the mental, social, and physical pitfalls associated with technology overload.
Of course, it’s possible to do this without using an app. Open conversations, strong trust, and well-maintained boundaries can go a long way in keeping kids from going down the more dangerous cyber rabbit holes.
Data shows, though, that it’s becoming harder and harder for families to peacefully manage screen time for their youngsters, which is why investing in Qustodio might be well worth it.
Qustodio makes it easy to block harmful content, reach healthy compromises, set reasonable limits, and stay aware of your child’s internet, call, and text activity.
As our lives become more and more digital, it’s important for parents and caregivers to be proactive about internet safety.
Qustodio helps you maintain a balanced, positive approach to your child’s online time – which might help them enjoy a more balanced and positive life overall.
Have any questions about our Qustodio review? Let us know by leaving a comment below.