Better design, improved operating systems and faster networks have dramatically improved the effectiveness of tracking apps – those GPS-driven monitoring programs that can help you keep an eye on the kids. Whether you have a youngster who is starting school or a teen who just got his driver’s license, these apps can help reduce stress and reassure parents that everyone is where they should be.
Although there are dozens of tracking apps to choose from, all of them are slightly different. Some are passive and merely pinpoint a phone’s location; some request a check-in or response from the person being tracked; and some are designed for undetectable surveillance, which starts to be less about monitoring and more about spying.
However, if you are a parent who is less worried about reading your kids’ texts and e-mails but more concerned about checking on their whereabouts, then Verizon’s own Family Locator solution is a great option.
Family Locator helps you securely determine the location of your family members’ phones and other mobile devices through the Family Locator web site, which you can access on a PC or through your own mobile device. Family locations are displayed as approximate addresses on a detailed map.
With Family Locator, you can receive notifications when family members arrive at or depart from specified locations, like a school, a friend’s house, or a workplace. You can also arrange to receive updates at specified dates and times.
You can send messages to family members via the Family Locator web site or the mobile web site application, and location information can be sent to a Verizon Wireless phone with the VZ Navigator app to get turn-by-turn driving directions.
Family Locator requires a Family SharePlan account and costs $9.99 per month per locatee line. There is no charge for the locator (monitoring) line. The Family Locator service can be used anywhere within the Verizon Wireless network but can’t be used when a phone is roaming.
Family Locator information can only be accessed by account owners and other individuals designated by the owner as locators. Location information is only visible via a PC or a cell phone using the appropriate account information including a password.
Family Locator won’t tell you who your daughter is texting or what web sites she has visited; if you want that kind of information, then you will need something a little more intrusive. But if you are looking for the peace of mind that comes with knowing exactly where your kids are, the Family Locator service is the perfect solution.
I have been compensated for this post. All opinions are my own.