Ashley... ASHLEY... ASHLEY!
If you have children (or have ever been a child) this concept is likely familiar to you. You start, politely, trying to get someone’s attention and gradually escalate to yelling. Maybe you even use the dreaded middle or last name call out. And you think, if only I could draw their attention away from that screen.
What if you, as a service provider, could be the hero and solve this problem for your subscribers? What if you could enable parents with a tool to get the attention of their child? What is this thing of magic you ask? Parental Control.
What IS Parental Control?
Let’s start with what it ISN’T. Unfortunately, it isn’t really magic and won’t make kids pay attention the first time their name is called. But it can be a powerful tool in the parenting arsenal.
The primary purpose of using a parental control feature is to provide guardrails around a child’s Internet experience. This may take the form of filtering specific types of content, websites, or applications, or enabling specific timeframes when they are not allowed online. Parents can even manually provide access on a whim, or when certain responsibilities are taken care of, with a tap of a button to turn their access on.
Do parents need it?
Many service providers host school programs designed to educate on Internet safety. Education is great, but tools are key too. If your subscribers are talking to their children about screen time limits or responsible online behavior, this type of solution can help in those efforts to enable the rules parents have established in the home.
What are my options?
There are tons of options out there for parents to enable online rules, delivered in a variety of ways, at a variety of price points. Some require special standalone hardware; others require software downloads onto each device a child has access to. The options are numerous.
Won’t kids just figure out how to disable it?
Kids are ingenious and creative so that’s always a possibility. It’s important to understand the limitations of the solutions you are evaluating to make sure it provides the broadest level of protection possible.
What percentage of parents use this type of service?
There are a lot of different resources with various numbers, but the 45-55 percent range seems to be solidly reported. And Statista, in research from June 2019, indicated that 49 percent of parents are trying to place time limits on the amount of time their children spend on video games.
What is the opportunity for service providers?
Service providers are already providing exceptional subscriber experiences and launching advanced Wi-Fi solutions to ensure their subscribers have the latest technology and capabilities to manage their home network. By adding a parental control feature to a managed Wi-Fi service offering, it’s an opportunity to extend the value of the investments made in your network to provide truly valuable services to your subscribers (and re-direct the revenue to you).
With the Calix Revenue EDGE you can begin providing our new EDGE Suites which consist of ExperienceIQTM: Enhanced Parental Controls and ProtectIQTM: Network Security services. These services are powered by our GigaSpire EDGE Systems, given full visibility to the applications through EDGE Insights, and controlled and managed through the CommandIQ™ app. Enable your subscribers and give them control over what happens in their home. Stay tuned for next week to dive more into the world of ProtectIQ and network security!