New dashboard gives parents insight into what their kids are doing on Amazon devices

Amazon FreeTime, both the free and paid version, is a great feature of the Fire TV and Fire tablets that allows parents to give their kids access to curated movies, shows, games, and websites, without worrying about them being exposed to adult themed content. Amazon has moderators who have approved content for kids, including over 8,000 books and 40,000 white-listed webpages.

Today, Amazon has introduced a Parent Dashboard for FreeTime that allows parents to see exactly how their kids are spending their time while on Fire devices. The dashboard also includes what Amazon is calling “Discussion Cards” that give parents a summary of the content their kids have interacted with, to make conversations about books, shows, and games easier.

The FreeTime Parent Dashboard is accessed at parents.amazon.com. It’s a mobile focused site that is expected to be viewed on smartphones. It provides a total use time and breakdown of each child’s activity. The number of minutes spent reading books, playing games, or watching videos is listed. The summary is granular and will list exactly which particular books, apps, videos, and even websites were used and for how long.

The idea with the dashboard is not to look over your kids shoulder to make sure they aren’t viewing something inappropriate. The FreeTime service itself already does that through its curated content. The parent dashboard is meant to give you a better understand of your child’s interests without having to watch Frozen with them for the gazillionth time.

Now that the dashboard has given insight into what interests a child most, the discussion cards in the dashboard give parents a quick summary of the content. The cards also list questions, related to the content, that can be asked to start a conversation.

Discussion cards currently don’t cover all of Amazon’s FreeTime content. Amazon is first focusing on the most popular items and will expand coverage over time.

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3 comments
  1. George Welsh says:

    Amazon has this feature so right! wish apple would do this. this seems like this would be apples forte, amazon is beating the pants off apple in parental controls.

  2. Peter says:

    Would love to see this for non-FreeTime accounts, or perhaps an “older FreeTime” option. I would like to track what my teenager is doing without necessarily blocking everything as much as the current version does. Conversations can happen but fewer restrictions.

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