Facebook announced its latest feature on Dec. 4 — ‘Messenger Kids’! It’s the company’s newest app, which allows kids to chat with friends and family!
Messenger Kids is Facebook’s latest feature, which allows young kids to chat with the approval of their parents or guardians. The social media giant announced its launch of the messaging app on Monday, December 4 with an emphasis on a safe kids-focused experience. Here’s everything to know about the new app!
1. What exactly is Messenger Kids? — The new app is basically a more simple and colorful version of Facebook’s original messenger app. However, the official description on the app’s website reads: Messenger Kids is a free video calling and messaging app designed for kids to connect with close friends and family from their tablet or smartphone. Kids can only connect with parent-approved contacts, which creates a more controlled environment. Group or one-on-one video calls with loved ones are more fun with interactive masks, reactions and sound effects.
2. Parental control — Messenger Kids is fully controlled by parents, who can initiate all contact requests on behalf of their children from the parental control settings located within Facebook. In order for two children to chat, both their parents must approve the connection to move forward. With parents in full control of their children’s contact list, they can also decide on which adults, such as an aunt or grandparent, they want their kids to be connected with through the app. In the short, parents have complete control over contacts, blocking, reporting and account creation/deletion.
3. Safety measures — All of the art and creative elements in the app were designed with kids in mind, Facebook revealed. The GIFs that kids are able to get their hands on to send to fellow chatters have also been designed to make sure they’re kid-appropriate. Other safety measures include:
- No advertising: Messenger Kids is an ad-free experience. There are also no in-app purchases.
- Messenger Kids is COPPA compliant: The app is designed to be compliant with child privacy laws such as the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, as stated on their website.
4. Is Messenger Kids free and where is it available? — The app is FREE. Messenger Kids is currently available in the App Store for iPad, iPod touch and iPhone. Facebook plans to launch the app on Android devices and Amazon Fire tablets soon. However, there is no official launch date at this time.
5. How to get started — Messenger Kids can be assembled in four easy steps.
- Download the Messenger Kids app: Parents can download the app on their children’s devices. Parents will use Messenger on their own device[s] to talk with their child.
- Authenticate your child’s device: This can be done by parents using their own Facebook login and password. This step will not create a Facebook account for your child or give your child access to your own Facebook account.
- Create an account for your child: All parents have to do is add their child’s name. After that, the device can be given to the child so they can chat with approved friends or family.
- Adding friends and family: Parents can add preferred contacts and review contact request from the Messenger Kids parental controls, located within Facebook.
HollywoodLifers, what do you think of Facebook’s newest app?