Qustodio Review: Flexible Cross-Device Parental Control Software

Parent checking their child's activity using Qustodio monitoring software

One of the biggest pitfalls of most parental control software is limited to a particular device or platform. Qustodio overcomes that by working across all your child’s devices.

How (and Where) It Works

If you’ve done any legwork researching different content filtering and app management solutions for your family, you’ve likely discovered something quickly. There are a ton of solutions that are pretty limited in scope. There are solutions that lock down web browsing, that lock down a single computer, or that work very well on a tablet or phone, but don’t work at all on computers—and then there are solutions that are some combination thereof.

Single device content filtering and monitoring might have worked well 10+ years ago when the only thing you were trying to keep an eye at home was a single computer. Today, however, many families have multiple devices and it’s not atypical for a child to have a computer, phone, and tablet depending on their age and the amount of tech in their household. If the goal is to keep your kids away from adult content and keep an eye on their app usage, then clearly a PC-only solution isn’t worth anything if they can just pick up their phone or tablet and do whatever they want unsupervised.

Above all else, this is where Qustodio, a flexible content filtering and application management tool, really shines. While the free account is limited to a single device (perfect for testing if the product will meet your needs or if you only need to secure a single device like your child’s iPad) a premium account allowed for cross-platform functionality across multiple devices. Armed with a premium plan—$54.95 a year for 5 devices, $96.95 for 10, or $137.95 for 15—you can get the same protection on your child’s computer (Windows or macOS), Android and iOS devices, and even Kindle tablets.

Not only does it work on all those different operating systems and devices, but it works across the entire device. No matter what app or web browser your child uses, the Qustodio system covers it. Using a different web browser, private browsing mode, or other workarounds that would defeat other more simplistic systems won’t work.

On top of all that, Qustodio also offers additional features like application use time tracking, application blocking (with rules and time settings such as restricting games or video apps during homework hours or bedtime hours, for example), social media monitoring (currently limited to just Facebook), mobile location tracking, and, on Android only, SMS monitoring and a panic button.

Qustodio achieves all this by combining on-device applications with administrative profiles for those devices to control access to restricted content and applications in a more granular way than many other tools can achieve. Let’s take a look at how to set it up, what daily use looks like, and what we thought of the whole experience.


Despite how sophisticated the system is under the hood, the setup process itself is extremely easy. That’s how it should be: you shouldn’t need to have a degree in computer science to secure your children’s devices.

Every Qustodio setup has two parts: the parental control account and the application installed on the child’s device(s).  To get started you simply need to create a parent account either on the website or using the control app on your phone or tablet.

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