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Facebook Launched 'Messenger Kids' Standalone App for Children Under 13

07 December 2017

The main catch is that these kids can only engage Facebook users through the new app as long as their parents or guardians approve of them.

Despite Kaspersky Labs vouching on how secure the app is, the cybersecurity company still warns parents of Messenger Kids, particularly on text filtering and cyberbullying.

Appropriately called Messenger Kids, it's a new messaging app designed specifically for kids between the ages of six and 12.

Marketing mattersFacebook said Messenger Kids will not display any advertisements or it will not collect data for marketing, though it will collect some data so that the app can necessary to run the service.

News that Facebook Messenger - and possibly Facebook as a whole - is down has taken the internet world by storm today.

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"Why should parents simply trust that Facebook is acting in the best interest of kids?" said James Steyer, founder and CEO of Common Sense Media, a San Francisco nonprofit that promotes online safety for children, in a statement.

Parents must then sign off on all their child's contacts, meaning that in theory they can not speak to anyone through the app without parental permission.

Just as vocal are parents who said children's adoption of technology is an inevitability and appreciated Facebook's approach with the new app. "After talking to thousands of parents, associations like National PTA, and parenting experts in the United States, we found that there's a need for a messaging app that lets kids connect with people they love but also has the level of control parents want", said Loren Cheng, a product management director at Facebook.

They can start a one-on-one or group video chat with parent-approved contacts - directly from the home screen.

Then, authenticate your child's iOS device using your own Facebook username and password.

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And messages don't disappear and can't be hidden in case parents want to monitor them, Facebook says on its website. Be it kids, adults and everyone.

No. There are no adverts in Messenger Kids.

Loren Cheng, product director for Messenger Kids, said Facebook would not use for marketing purposes the details it collected from children. "It is free to download and there are no in-app purchases".

It's an early version of the app with limited availability. Well, when will it be available we don't know that. It will be coming to Amazon App Store and Google Play Store in "the coming months".

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Facebook Launched 'Messenger Kids' Standalone App for Children Under 13