Using ‘Messenger Kids’ app allows kids under the age of 13 to send texts videos and photos
Social media leader Facebook has yet rolled out another existing app called ‘Messenger Kids’, which allow under-age kids to send texts, photo and videos.
World’s biggest social media company expanded its services to untapped market of kids under 13 while also giving parents complete control over what their children see.
To ensure that the app does not meddle in any controversy, consent of a parent is important before registering for the app or adding new contacts.
The newly launched app does not require a phone number for making an account, rules out the possibility of anyone outside the contact list from connecting with the kid.
Facebook normally requires users to be at least 13 years old, the new app gives it a chance to win brand loyalty from younger children at a time when it faces competition for teenagers from other social media platforms such as Snap-chat.
The app doesn’t have ads, so Facebook isn’t sharing anything with ad partners, and the app also doesn’t have in-app purchases. It meets the Children’s Online Privacy and Protection app guidelines.
There already are a handful of other apps that children can use with parental consent, and kids can communicate with each other using texting on cell phones.
Facebook said it consulted with 1,200 parents plus online security and child development specialists, including the National Parent-Teacher Association, the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence, Connect Safely, Center on Media and Child Health, and Sesame Workshop.
The app launches on Apple’s App Store first. Facebook plans to release Android and Amazon versions next year. The company has no plans to release a similar kids-only platform for its other main social network, Instagram.
Facebook’s Public Policy Director Antigone Davis writes Children today are online earlier and earlier. They use family shared devices and many, as young as six or seven years old, even have their own.