For many, Facebook is the center of digital communication. Be it the social network itself or the dedicated messenger, which can do so much more than just send messages. Facebook is now releasing Messenger Kids in the US, a messenger designed specifically for children, with control over the chat activity staying with the parents at all times. Facebook wants to create a safe environment for the communication of the youngest users.
Facebook tests the messenger for the time being on iOS and only once in the US. While the availability for Android and via Amazon App Stores is already on the horizon, there is no indication as to whether or when Messenger Kids is intended for the rest of the world.
Parents can create a "kids account" directly from the Messenger. This account can only contact users who have been approved by parents. So it's not possible for the child to suddenly interact with strangers via messenger.
In terms of functions, both individual and group chats are available, video calls are possible or decorating pictures with text or crackles. Likewise, various masks and filters are available for pictures. So a messenger with supervision.
A great thing that should also make it easier for parents to tackle the difficult topic of smartphones and social networks earlier and easier. These are tools that I would have wished for my daughter 10 or even 5 years ago. So you can bring children slowly and controlled to the digital communication, I think that's great.
Of course you should also keep in mind that such a messenger provides a lot of data that can be evaluated by Facebook. No worries, according to Facebook. Neither Messenger Kids is provided with advertising, nor is the data of children used for advertising. Messenger Kids is also set up to comply with the Children's Online Privacy and Protection Act (COPPA).
More information about Messenger Kids can be found on this page. If you have children of the same age, would you use Messenger Kids to have some control?