Facebook is launching a new version of its chat app targeting children under 13 with strict parental controls including contact approvals.
The free app, called Messenger Kids, hopes to attract parents looking for a safe online chat service, with a greater level of parental control, child-friendly features, screened content and safety filters to prevent children sharing inappropriate content.
Messenger Kids is a standalone app installed on the child’s tablet or smartphone, but controlled from a parent’s Facebook account. The child does not have a Facebook account, which is prohibited for those under 13; instead the app operates as an extension of the parent’s account. Only parents have the ability to add friends or delete messages.