Things You Need to Know about Facebook Messenger Kids

Facebook is the social network that keeps on giving. It seems like the largest social networking site releases a new update each week. Its most recent feature is all about the kids.

Facebook, through the new Messenger Kids app, is focusing on kids aged 13 years and below. The child-friendly app will make it possible for kids to safely communicate with their family and friends through text messages and video chat.

Parent-Approved App?

Facebook decided to create a messaging service specifically for children after talking to thousands of parents, numerous child experts in the US, and agents of the National PTA.  The social media giant uncovered the need for a messaging app that enables children to communicate with their loved ones, BUT also offers a high level of parental control.

In a Facebook survey, they discovered that children had the right device, but the wrong program. In the US, 66% of children between 6 and 12 years old own a tablet or a smartphone. About 93% have access to said devices. Three out of every five parents who participated in the survey noted that their children under 13 years of age are capable of using the messaging app.

Legally, the US Federal law doesn’t permit users under 13 years old to have a registered Facebook account. As such, it’s the responsibility of the parents to regulate which family member and close friends their child can get in touch with through Messenger Kids.

The parents have full control of their kid’s account. If there is a new chat request from an unknown contact, the parents must vet the person on the other line. They can directly control the app through their Facebook account.

Features of Messenger Kids

The new child-friendly Facebook app feature the following benefits:

Video Chat

Kids can have a one-on-one video chat with someone if the contact is approved by their guardian. They can also join group video chats. The app’s home screen will also display the list of the approved contacts.

Filter Strategy

Messenger Kids offers kid-friendly emojis, fun images, and sound effects. Even the GIFs are vetted by the adults.

Regular Chat

The app enables children to exchange text messages to approved contacts. They can also send and receive photos. All multimedia files will be redirected to the Facebook account of their parents.

Kiddie Reporter

The new Facebook app lets children report inappropriate content through the option “Something Else.”  Once a report is noted, the app will immediately notify the parents about it.

Ad-Free

As per Facebook, no advertisement is allowed on the new app.

How to Access Messenger Kids

As of yet, Messenger Kids is limited to the Apple App store in the US. The app will be available to Android devices early next year.

Right after downloading Messenger Kids, parents need to authenticate the app using their own Facebook profile. The authentication will not create a Facebook account for their child. Also, their kid won’t be able to access the Facebook page of their parents. Parents can access and control the contact list through the control tab on their Facebook account.

 

So, what do you think of Facebook Messenger Kids?

Rossana