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A few weeks ago we wrote an article on some of the best apps on how to monitor your kids’ online activity. Well, now we are going to focus a little more on keeping your family safe in the physical world. Yes, recent studies show that crime and violence are declining, but the world is a scary place and technology has finally given us the means to make sure our families are safe. So why not use said technology and keep an eye on family & friends by means of tracking apps?
There are two ways to track; via apps and via devices. For now, we are only going to talk about some great tracking apps that are easy-to-use and will help you locate your family’s location from anywhere.
By far the best of the lot here, Zenly Locator is a free real-time app available on both iOS and Android. The app brings all the benefits of location sharing such as live GPS locations, messaging, stealth mode to devices in an easy-to-use way. The app also shows you how much battery is left on your family/friend’s phone, which is great to understand why the other party is not replying to texts or calls. The privacy settings are fairly simple; you can choose to either hide yourself completely, show the city or the precise location. Although Zenly runs in the background by it is the ‘lightness’ of all apps I’ve ever come across (for location sharing).
Once again, the app is free and anyone with iOS or Android can use it. So far the creators have not developed its Windows Phone app but when they do, I’ll be sure to update it asap.
“developed by digital parents”, the Kidgy app is a great tracking locator app allowing parents to check on their kids remotely, set up no-go areas on the virtual map and, thus, assure their physical safety. There’s a Panic Button which when clicked by a child, immediately informs a parent about the kid’s exact whereabouts. This is also a very reliable child monitoring app which literally translates the whole online activity to a parent. Parents can view websites and social media. They can prevent a child from online risks (like cyberbullying, child sexting etc.) Available on both, iOS and Android devices, the software is free of charge for a Panic Button, the task manager, the GPS tracking and geo-fencing features. To monitor calls, text messages, apps, contacts as well as manage an online activity, parents need an upgrade option which starts from $9.99/month. It’s a good bargain because the child’s safety is above all.
Life 360 is a great app if you can get over the pink and purple. It’s available on iOS, Android and WP. The app doesn’t just track your location, but like Zenly, it also has private messaging within the app so that friends and family members can communicate in one place. Users can break up individuals into different circles, whose locations can be tracked and managed at any time. The app has a simple interface and is neat enough for your locating needs. There are few more features but those are for premium subscribers only, such as locate stolen or lost phones, looking up non-smartphones, roadside assistance and 24/7 advisor etc. Premium services are limited to USA and start from $4.99/Month with a 30-day free trial. If you don’t want to pay for this app then too its a good choice but some features get restrictive.
Mama Bear is a great app for parents with teenagers. The app allows parents’ to monitor their kids’ location, as well as receive updates and messages from their kids. The app also allows users to monitor social media, as well as monitor their teen’s driving habits. You can set the app to alert you when your teen begins to speed or even if they are texting while driving. For the parents who have to know everything about their child and what they’re doing, this is a good one to have. This app is free but added features such as “no ads” and “prior week of daily location” is only available on paid plans.
Family Tracker is certainly one of the oldest apps on this list, but it is still popular because it is effective. Family Tracker functions just like the others, but whereas other apps on this list focus on in-app messaging, Family Tracker pushes information through as notifications. This makes it a much more streamlined process, and it is a more effective way to get important updates about your family members and where they are. The app has features like stealth ping, web service, geofencing, global access, history log and location grabbing variety. For a one-time fee of $3.99 and $4.99, this app will keep you constantly updated on your family and where they are. There is a free version available for iPhones and iPads but the duration is only limited to 2 weeks of use after which you either uninstall the app or purchase a subscription of $1.99 ever month
Exclusive to Windows Phone, this app doesn’t have some of the premium design qualities of Mama Bear, Life 360 or that of Zenly, but it makes up for it by being simple and effective. KeepTrack can be connected to up to 14 devices, and it can track the immediate location of all those devices as well as message them from within the app. The only drawback is that it is only compatible with Windows devices. But, if you are a Windows family and you are looking for something cohesive, free and simple, KeepTrack is your ultimate tracking app. Its features include Secure & Private IM, real-time LiveTracking & One click SOS mode.
Karavan is a fairly new real-time group map app that’s available for iOS only. With Karavan, you can easily create secure groups with just a password or invitation. Once you make a group on Karavan, you can see everyone in your group on the map in real-time. You can drop pins for the entire group to see, and you can easily get directions to pins or other users through Google Maps or Apple Maps at the tap of a button within the app. What sets Karavan apart from other location apps on the market is it puts the user back in control of their privacy. You can easily change who can see your location by joining a different group. If you don’t want to share your location with anyone for the moment, simply swipe the app closed.
As you can see, locating your kids and family is a pretty simple process, and modern technology such as these tracking apps have made it easier than ever to make sure that they are safe. The best part of it all is that it won’t cost you an arm and a leg to do it! Do let us know if there are more apps that you have used and are satisfied with.
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