In the search for the best parental control app, parents all over the world have a hard time trying out various software to determine which one serves their needs the best. That is why we bring fair and unbiased reviews for such apps so that parents don’t have to go scouring the internet and downloading various applications onto their children’s phones to try them out. We make sure that our app reviews are objective and helpful, and we do not partner with any of the reviewed apps directly, even though the links found in our reviews may suggest so.
With that out of the way, let’s take a look at our Qustodio review, which aims to be the best parental control app you can use.
What is Qustodio and How Does it Work?
Qustodio professional is a premium parental control app that works on various devices to ensure that parents can monitor the internet usage of their children at all times. It’s an application that makes it possible for parents to be at peace that they will know if anything potentially dangerous or harmful is on its way of happening to their children. In today’s world, such fears are growing very quickly and keeping a close eye on the internet usage of young children is one of the best ways to stop some perverted online predators from making touch with your young ones.
Qustodio works quite simply. You download the application on the device you want to track, install it, and let it run in the background. It has an option of tracking without making itself visible on the target device which is useful if you want to see what your children really do on their devices on a regular basis. The app then lets you manage various settings via an online portal where you can also see the tracked data from the target device. It’s a pretty simple way of monitoring your child’s internet usage but it can be very helpful in keeping them safe.
Next in our Qustodio review, let’s see which devices you can run the app on:
Qustodio for Android
Of course, many young children these days have Android smartphones because they offer a lot of customizability as well as freedom over what they can do with their devices. Qustodio works perfectly on such devices thanks to Android’s overall open nature.
Qustodio for iPhone
On iPhones, Qustodio is less useful because iOS doesn’t allow for monitoring apps to run perfectly because of its more locked-down nature than Android. Still, you can use Qustodio on iPhones and ask your children to use the app’s own browser to monitor their usage.
Qustodio for PC
The best thing about this app is that it works with Windows and macOS as well. This means that parents don’t have to buy separate spy software for their children’s phones and computers but can use a Qustodio download on all devices.
Let’s now see in our Qustodio what main features are offered by the app and whether these are ones that you’d want to use or not.
You can enable or disable access to any app on your child’s device. On top of that, you can also decide how long your child can use a certain app at a time. This feature is quite limited on iOS, however, and there are around 70 apps that Qustodio can manage in this way on iPhones.
Qustodio’s web filter is excellent at what it does. Once you’ve installed the Qustodio apk or setup file on the target device, the app will automatically suggest you to block certain types of websites. These include websites with violent, profane, and drug-related content among many others. You can set up the app to either block these websites or alert you when your child tries to access one.
With a Qustodio download, you will also be able to set restrictions on when your child can use a certain device. You can set this in two ways; on a weekly basis and on a daily basis. For the weekly schedule, you can decide which hours on which days your child can use their device. For the daily schedule, you can decide exactly how long your child can use their device. Once your child reaches the end of their allotted time, you can choose to either by notified, to lock the navigation of the device, or to completely lock down the device.
Texting and Call Management
This Qustodio review wouldn’t be complete without talking about the app’s ability to monitor text messages and calls. You can see the content and sender of every message and also see who’s calling your children. You can then block calls from certain contacts if you wish. This feature works for Android devices only.
Qustodio’s location tracking feature works by letting you know whenever the location of your child’s device changes if you’re tracking an iOS device. For Android devices, you can set the app up in a way so as to inform you of the device’s location after every few minutes.
Pros / Cons
- Excellent performance and good user reviews.
- A completely free version, albeit limited.
- Support for a vast range of devices.
- Dated web interface.
- Premium plans are a little pricey.
- Customer support is limited for users of the free version.
- Potential lack of features.
One of Qustodio’s problems is that getting in touch with technical support can only be done via their online contact form. They do say that they respond within 1-2 days but it would be nicer to have a live chat option. However, if you are a user of Qustodio Premium, then you get a response to your problems on a priority basis.
Qustodio offers two main plans. You can use Qustodio Free or Qustodio Premium. The free version allows you to monitor just one device at a time and the functionality is also limited. The Premium version offers all the features mentioned above and some extras like a Panic Button and Facebook monitoring. The Premium version comes in three different plans. The Small plan is for up to 3 devices and costs $39.95 per year. The Medium and Large plans are for up to 5 and 10 devices, and cost $54.95 and $96.95 per year, respectively.
While Qustodio’s free version does exist, the nice thing about the app is that it automatically upgrades you to a 3-day trial version of the Premium version when you sign up. It doesn’t ask for your payment details for this, as many others do, which is a very welcome change.
Being a monitoring app, Qustodio may sometimes run into problems. Some people report that Qustodio is not showing text messages, or Qustodio is not reporting as it should. Other than these, two common problems are:
- Qustodio is currently offline.
- Qustodio is not reporting location.
In order to fix these issues, you can disable the app and re-enable it after some time. Usually, this solves such problems.
How to Temporarily Disable Qustodio
If your child’s device is blocked by Qustodio and you need to unblock it, you can press the settings icon that shows up on the block screen. After that, you can choose to disable protection but only after you put in your password. This way, your child cannot unblock their device without your authorization.
How to Get Around Qustodio (Android, iPhone, PC)
Using Qustodio is fairly simple once you’ve logged into your online portal. For whatever device you’re monitoring, your personal web portal remains the same so there is not much work you need to do to get around using Qustodio for monitoring. Detailed instructions are available on the website if you run into any issues.
All in all, this Qustodio review is a very positive one. The app is great at what it does and it also offers its functionality across a range of devices so you can use just one app to monitor multiple devices. While the web interface may be dated and the price may be a little high, overall the application has a lot of potential in keeping kids safe and responsible with their internet usage.