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What I need to know about mobile phones

Mobile phones, which are now an integral part of the lives of many children since they are how they communicate with their friends, are undoubtedly useful in that they also help you to communicate with your children at any given moment wherever they may be. On the other hand, they can also expose a child to a variety of dangers.

If your children have a smartphone, they probably use it to send and receive emails, to update their social network profile or blog, to watch videos on YouTube, to search for things on websites, to make online purchases and to take photos.

The age of the Smartphone

Smartphones are in great demand, especially by young people, so it is important to keep up with the latest technological developments and to be aware of what these devices can do before give one to your child.

Smartphones can do much more than make simple phone calls or send text messages. They let you take photographs and videos and forward them to others, they give you Internet access to send and receive emails, to engage in instant messaging, to process documents, to make and receive updates on social networking sites, to guide you via GPS and to play games with friends.

Mobile phone apps

Mobile application platforms are an important development since they enable the downloading of apps from a website or an app store and their installation on a mobile phone. Almost all smartphones have this capability and there are specific places such as the Apple Store or the Google Play Store, from which users can get and download apps, which are developing for a host of uses.

From games to travel maps and from recipes to constellation identification, their potential is unlimited and they are fast taking over the technology landscape. It is important for parents to recognise that certain apps are unsuitable for children and young people (e.g. they may contain adult material for over-18s) and that others may pose a security risk (e.g. by containing malware). Smartphones also have built-in web browsers that can access all kinds of content on the worldwide web such as maps, social networks and games. This means that all the content and services available on the web are also available in your or your child’s pocket.

SafeMobile app

Recognising a specific need, Cytamobile-Vodafone has created a new app, safeMobile, which provides you with the tool to give your children “controlled freedom” by allowing them to use their mobile phone to access their world, however filtering their access.

With the new safeMobile app, you can strengthen your role as a parent in the new digital age by offering controlled freedom and safety to your children whenever they use their smartphone.

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