Facebook today announced a new version of Messenger meant for kids. Messenger for Kids is “a standalone app that lives on kids’ tablets or smartphones but can be controlled from a parent’s Facebook account.” The app doesn’t need the user to have a Facebook account and only allows children over the age of 13 to sign up. Parents can control which family members and friends the child will be able to contact using this app. The preview version of the app is on limited rollout for Apple’s iOS platform right now.
The app doesn’t need the user to have a Facebook account and only allows children over the age of 13 to sign up.
“There are no ads in Messenger Kids and your child’s information isn’t used for ads. It is free to download and there are no in-app purchases,” the company said in a blog post. Messenger Kids also complies with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, generally abbreviated to COPPA. The law protects underage children from online harassment.
Further, Messenger Kids will have a collection of GIFs, frames, stickers, drawing toos and masks that are suitable for children. Parents will be able to see and control their child’s contact lists and check on their chat threads. Of course, parents will also have to download the app for this, and authenticate it using their own Facebook user names and passwords. An account cannot be created on Messenger Kids unless approved by the parent.