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Author Topic: Nexus 7 for a 11 year old  (Read 1429 times)

Offline timfg

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Nexus 7 for a 11 year old
« on: January 30, 2014, 03:11:07 PM »
OK, I've done a lot of Googling around the best approach to what I want to achieve, but found nothing that answers all the criteria in a way that I'm clear is the best answer.  So I figured I was best off laying out the detail in a relevant forum and see what came back, since I'm sure the requirement is actually quite common.

I bought my daughter a 2012 Nexus 7 for her 10th birthday, just after it was released. (And liked it so much, I ditched my iPad and bought myself a 2013 when it came out - but I digress...). I've worked in IT for almost 20 years, have a coding background: I'm not scared of it, won't be phased by complexity, but don't want to know about any solutions that rely on rooting the device.

At the age of 10, I wasn't letting her near the device without ensuring she couldn't wander somewhere I didn't want her to: After researching the topic for a while, I installed Funamo on it, which seems to work OK, although I have reservations about the inability to properly lock down Safe Search in Chrome - search results can be pretty eye-opening in their own right. The device is set up with her as the owner, with a pseudo mail address at a domain I own. Mail to this address goes to me, as it stands (easily flipped to her own mail account when the time's right). I use MS' Family Protection on home PCs, which works very well. Play Store is set up with my Google ID and locked down, a bit. All good. She also has a Gmail address, unbeknown to her, since I figured that in time I would want to expose her to aspects of Google's provision as she was ready for the facility - but does not currently use mail at all

She is now well past 11. I would like to give her access to email. The Nexus is up to 4.3 Android, with additional profiles / restricted profiles a possible route - but there are some clear musts in the way I want it set up:

 - She must have access to her own GMail account. This rules out any route that involves a restricted profile AFAICS as they have no mail. I don't want a solution that involves a different mail service as I can much more easily monitor her usage in GMail - and all of the rest of the family is in Google services anyway, so far better for shared calendars etc)
 - Parental controls needed on web access, social media, apps etc (Funamo the only route I'm confident in, but not sure how it works with multiple profiles, although sure it can). I need to protect her - at least for a year or three - from stumbling on the unsavoury.
 - Access via my Google account to Play Music (which she currently has - all of her music is also in my account)
 - Sharing of apps in my Google account, primarily because I don't want to have to pay twice.  I could give this one up if I had to, but I still want to control her access to the Play Store for the time being.

In September she'll start High School, and beginning to relax some of this becomes inevitable - but, for the moment, I want control and visibility.  She isn't untrustworthy - but she is 11, curious and will do dumb things :-)

I'm amazed there isn't better guidance around this out there - but, if there is, I can't find it. For a younger child, it's straightforward - restricted profile and watchful eye / Funamo. A wizened teenager, easy - it's your device, here are the rules, relaxation of Funamo filtering until remove it and you're on your own in mid/late-teens.  But for a child moving from former state to the later - really hard to know the best approach. I'd really appreciate any thoughts - or advice on where I might turn for answers if this forum draws a blank.

Thank-you!




Offline S.Prime

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Re: Nexus 7 for a 11 year old
« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2014, 08:02:46 PM »
You appear to be doing your homework, when it comes to protecting your daughter, and I am assuming that you are restricting purchases in the Google account with a key code. As she is reaching her teen years perhaps you should consider an email address that allows monitoring, where all emails incoming and outgoing are echoed in a monitoring address, that you control, rather than trying to filter. She will appreciate the trust and yet know that you have the ability to monitor. Browsing restrictions are okay, but she is reaching the age where she will learn how to circumvent them, so IMHO, monitoring, education, and a sense of values is your best choice.

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Offline timfg

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Re: Nexus 7 for a 11 year old
« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2014, 04:31:08 AM »
Actually, that's almost exactly why I want her to have a GMail address, coupled with the family's general embeddedness in Google's services - Google makes that kind of integration and monitoring relatively simple.  Sure, it can be turned off from within her account on a PC, but I would know very quickly if she'd managed to do that and it's not a real concern anyway. And I'm not sure that Funamo is that easily circumvented, as long as you pay attention to the config - but I'm not worried at deliberate attempts to circumvent it at the moment in any case, by the time she's old enough to have both desire and nous to do it, these issues will mostly have gone away.

Most of the difficulty can be avoided by setting it up with her as the sole user, then using Funamo to manage web filtering and app access, with a password on the Play store to ensure she cant accidentally spend a load of cash.  My biggest concern with this is a) having to pay twice for apps I already own [not that big a deal, there aren't that many she would want] and access to Google Play Music - this is a must, but I'm not sure whether it will accept a different Google account than the 'owning' one for access.  Can anyone confirm?

Offline S.Prime

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Re: Nexus 7 for a 11 year old
« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2014, 06:46:15 AM »
Good points again, your reference to nous goes hand in hand with my reference to education, meaning the education derived from a loving and concerned parent's values. You can have two Google accounts on the Nexus 7 then set a purchase key for each in the Play Store, then use your Google account to install the apps that you want her to have and turn off the mail, calendar, Google+ and other sync, for which you do not want her to have access. Then she can have the monitored email with her Google account. I have done this for many clients where they have two children with Android devices and do not want to double purchase apps from the Play Store.

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« Last Edit: January 31, 2014, 06:48:18 AM by S.Prime »
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Offline timfg

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Re: Nexus 7 for a 11 year old
« Reply #4 on: January 31, 2014, 08:12:38 AM »
Yes - I'm not trying to find technology approaches to block someone who's determined to circumvent them, far from it.  She's an intelligent child, who understands that there are things out there that she may not be ready to deal with - but, at 11, still quite capable of stepping in the wrong direction without realising.

Interested in your response - can you elaborate a bit? This involves me as the primary account holder and her as an additional (non-restricted) account? I can install Play Music under my account, but she can use it in hers, whilst maintaining her own GMail, Calendar etc (But not G+)?

 


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