Smart Apps For Android: REVIEW: EddyPaddy KidsWorld - Fun World (best Android apps for kids and parents)

Sunday, February 23, 2014

REVIEW: EddyPaddy KidsWorld - Fun World (best Android apps for kids and parents)

Bottom Line: A top notch parental control app that really gives you control. So many features and options that allow parents to choose exactly what their children can access, when and for how long, as well as reporting on their children's screen usage. A must-have app for any Android owner. For a limited time, this app comes with five paid apps for free!

Price: $5.00                           Size: 12.87MB


External link from the parent dashboard to the eddypaddy website and to email support.

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Get it on Google Play

App explained: Are you sitting down? Are you ready for this? It might take me a while to tell you about all the features available in this app! First and foremost, a parental control app must have separate kids' and adults' sections. EddyPaddy KidsWorld downloaded appears on your device as two app shortcuts: EddyPaddy KidsWorld and Parent Dashboard. The Parent Dashboard is the "control center" of the app and EddyPaddy KidsWorld is the functioning parental control with the option to create up to three kids' profiles.

The home page of EddyPaddy KidsWorld leads to the children's profiles, an emergency dialler (unless it is a tablet without a sim card) or out of the app to full access of the device. Parents can set their phone to be answerable while in kid mode, or to requiring the unlock pattern. Once the phone is answered, and hung up, it goes back into kid mode. Also after going to sleep, the device goes back into kid mode, unless the parent turns that option off (a lock screen password will affect this feature).

Each child's profile presents apps in three categories: educational, creative and entertaining. The apps within each of these categories appear according to the age entered for the child, as well as what the parent has nominated. Besides the apps already installed on the device, selected videos and websites are included, also based on the child's age. Within the Parent Dashboard, parents have full control over what is included, as well as having the option to add more apps and websites.

The next great feature of this app is the time limits. Not only do parents have the ability to set what hours of the day that each child can use the device, but they can also set how long each child can access each category of apps for e.g. child one is allowed the device between 6:00am and 9:00am, and can play educational apps for 20 minutes, creative apps for 10 minutes and entertaining apps for 10 mintues. Child two is allowed the device between the 8:30am and 4:30pm and is allowed to play educational apps for 30 minutes, creative apps for 20 minutes and entertaining apps for 15 minutes.

Once all of the profiles have been set up with the apps, videos and websites allowed, the times of day allowed and length of time allowed, reports about each child's usage of the device are available for viewing online. These reports show the time spent in each app category as a pie chart, list the top 3 apps used across all categories and list the top 3 apps used for each category. The length of time allowed in each category can be adjusted here also.

Pros/Cons: By creating profile for different children, it gives a sense of ownership to each child, a sense of freedom by being able to play within their profile on whatever they like (within their time limits). However, this sense of empowerment can be lost by children being able to access each other's profiles, which can also nullify the validity of the reports.

The app is presented very well, is excellent quality and has just about every feature you could possibly want for a parental control app. The customizabilty of this app, i.e. the amount of features and control that parents have, makes EddyPaddy KidsWorld the top of its class. Profiles can be imported from one device to another, with the child's reports on app usage being for each separate device. If the userid is forgotten, it can make usage of this feature difficult, however support is available by emailing the developer.

The main drawbacks of this app are the inability to edit a profile once it is created, (it can easily be deleted and a new one created). Profile avatars can be changed to photo from the gallery, but the orientation of the photos I chose was always sideways. The notification panel (on my Samsung devices at least) can still be accessed from the child profiles. Settings cannot be accessed and no external links or in-app purchases are allowed in kid mode, but other features on my phone can be fiddled with, such as wifi, bluetooth, driving mode etc.

The constant switching from landscape to portrait orientation was a little annoying. If your device is set to automatically screen rotate, that helps, but on my phone I would've preferred to be able to stay with portrait orientation. Lastly the videos offered are not customizable (as far as I could tell!) and may not necessarily suit your child's needs or tastes. Not all of the videos loaded thumbnails for me to see what they were, either, so in the end I chose to turn that feature off. Finally, there is the subject of price. Why buy a $5 app when there are free parental control apps? There certainly are a lot of features available in EddyPaddy KidsWorld, and I know that there are other parental control apps who would only offer those via monthly subscription. As a one off purchase, that includes all future updates at no extra cost, I would say this is worth it. As an added bonus, EddyPaddy KidsWorld comes with five paid apps for free!

Suggestions for updates: It would be fantastic if each child could personalize their profile with different color schemes (purely for aesthetics as it would not affect the function of the app). Despite EddyPaddy KidsWorld being aimed at 2-8yr olds, it would be great for each child to have some kind of passcode for their own profile so that a child does not have the ability to enter his sibling's profile after his time limit is up. In regard to setting time limits, being able to set different access times for weekends would be useful. Every new app installed on the device is able to be categorized, but there is no option to create your own category, such as Books, Tools, Other and apps can only be assigned to one category, even if they fit really well in a couple.

Summary: One of the best things about the Android platform is the ability to customize and control the technology you own. Just about everything can be personalized and adjusted to suit individual needs and tastes. Parental control apps are one reason I believe Android devices are now outselling iOS and EddyPaddy KidsWorld is the perfect example of putting the protection of children in the hands of the customer. There are plenty of features for providing safe play for your children, and the app does not just assume settings, but lets you choose. EddyPaddy KidsWorld is an excellent app that is worth downloading for peace of mind.

Device/s used:
Phone - Samsung Galaxy S4 (Android 4.3)
Tablet - Samsung Galaxy Tab3 10.1" (Android 4.2.2)

Smart Apps For Android was paid a fee for this priority review.

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Cas asserted parental control over her birthday chocolate and has hidden it so she doesn't have to share.

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Be sure to check out our other reviews:

The New Animal Similes (2.5 stars)

Learn To Tell Time - Fun Clock (4 stars)

Preschool Math Booster Zoo (4 stars)

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