Samsung Logo Store 2.2 2014

Kids Mode to Debut Parental Controls on Galaxy S5

February 20, 2014 - Written By Nick Sutrich

Every year each manufacturer has at least one big flagship device, and every year there has to be something significant about that device to set it apart not only from last year’s flagship, but also from the rest of the pack on the market.  Samsung’s latest upcoming flagship the Galaxy S5 will likely be no exception to that rule, even if it isn’t pushing the boundaries of mobile speed or display density.  So how does Samsung sell its newest phone without simply upgrading its hardware to the latest and greatest?  Software and features will likely be the crowning achievement of this year’s Next Big Thing, and it’s coming in various forms too.  Besides the expected complete overhaul of Samsung’s much-despised TouchWiz user interface, Samsung is seemingly going to add more modes to the already dizzying array of modes present on current devices, but this time around it seems like a truly useful one.  Kids Mode is what we’re talking about, and it really sounds like it would be something that would sell some devices.

The basic idea behind Kids Mode is pretty simple and straightforward, but that seems to be what’s so brilliant about it.  Those who have kids know that they love touch your phone or tablet, and sometimes it’s downright scary to hand them such an expensive device.  While this mode won’t help when they throw it into a brick or other such objects that prove your expensive toy isn’t indestructible, it will help with keeping them out of places and apps they don’t need to be going.  While there are phones and tablets specifically designed for kids, parents don’t always want such toys around or don’t have access to them for whatever reason, and just handing your device over can make a lot of sense in certain circumstances.  Kids mode works a lot like multi-user mode on Android tablets and is essentially a different login that’s locked down how you see fit.  Want to restrict certain websites or the browsing the web as a whole, close off email or only allow certain apps to be used?  All that is possible and more, and there’s even easy ways to set up parental controls for store purchases and in-app purchases as well.

The interface looks a lot like other leaks we’ve come across from Samsung’s newest interface redesign, and that’s to say it’s colorful and flat.  This sort of direction started with the Galaxy Note 3 but is apparently taking a huge step forward as all Samsung apps have been redesigned.  The kids mode also features its own app store with free and paid games and learning apps, which you can enable or disable as you see fit.  There aren’t any screenshots of this mode quite yet, but you won’t have to wait long to see it in action anyway, as Samsung is announcing the Galaxy S5 this coming Monday, February 24th, in Barcelona at Mobile World Congress 2014.