How do I set up call and SMS text message monitoring on Android devices?
Due to recent changes in Google policies, the version of the Qustodio app available on the Google Play Store no longer includes our Calls and SMS monitoring feature. However, if you would like to use this feature, you can download the full version of the Qustodio app onto your child’s device directly from our website.
Simply open a browser on your child’s Android device to this URL and follow the instructions: www.qustodio.com/downloads/android-with-calls-and-sms-get or scan this QR code on your child's Android device:
Make sure to restart the device after updating the app.
Once installed, log in to the Family Portal and click your child’s tab, and choose Rules > Calls and SMS. Make sure the switch that enables Call and SMS monitoring is ON.
You will also have the option to block incoming calls, outgoing calls, or set a specific rules for individual phone numbers.
Free vs. Premium call and text message monitoring
The free version of Qustodio will place an alert in your child’s activity timeline each time your child sends or receives a call or text message, however you will not be able to see the contact details. The Premium version of Qustodio will allow you to see more details about the contact as well as the full content of the text message.
How can I view the calls and SMS text messages?
Calls and messaging details will appear in the Activity Timeline and Calls & SMS Summary. If no calls or text messages have been sent or received, you won’t see any updates in the activity timeline or social activity tabs. Blocked calls will also appear in the activity timeline.
What happens on the phone when I set blocking rules?
- Incoming Calls: There is no notification to the user when a blocked incoming call. The call is intercepted by Qustodio and any notifications about the call will be deleted. However it is important to note that the caller may still be able to leave a voice message. Information about the call will be reported on the Activity Timeline.
- Outgoing calls: When a user tries to make an outgoing call they will see a block screen letting them know that calls have been restricted, as shown below. Information about the call will be reported on the Activity Timeline.
- Emergency services numbers (e.g.: 911 in the US, 999 in the UK, 112 in Europe) will not be blocked by Qustodio.
- In the case of a Panic Alert, your trusted contacts will still be sent alerts even if the contact is blocked.
How to deactivate calls and SMS text message monitoring and/or blocking
To deactivate this option, you can simply visit your Family Portal and then go into your child’s tab and choose Rules > Calls and SMS. Turn off the switch that enables calls and SMS text message monitoring.
If you don’t see your child’s mobile phone in the list of Monitored Android devices, please double check the following:
- You have downloaded and installed the latest version of Qustodio from our website.
- To do so, please follow the instructions at the beginning of this article.
- You have correctly associated the child’s profile in Qustodio with the phone in Settings > Devices > Edit device options.
- If you want to add a new child to your Qustodio account, please find how to do so here.
- The device is running the latest version of the Android. For most devices, you can update the operating system to the latest version in Settings > About Phone/Device > Software Update > Update. If you’re not sure how to do that, or can’t find this option, please refer to your mobile device user’s guide.
Some devices sold by phone operators have a modified SMS feature, called 'Advanced Messaging' which affects Qustodio's monitoring. Also, some devices may send messages as 'Group' or 'Multimedia' messages (sometimes called 'MMS'), which Qustodio cannot monitor. We recommend checking and disabling all those options on the Android device.
The 'Advanced Messaging' setting may vary depending on the phone model, but you can usually disable it by following these steps:
- On your child's phone, go to the SMS messages app (the default texting app).
- Select the 'More' menu, then 'Settings' and then 'Advanced Messaging'.
- Turn 'Advanced Messaging' off.
If you cannot find Advanced messaging you should look in the phone settings for VoLTE and turn it off. Then restart the phone, make sure it has an internet connection and make a test text in and out.
Another option that may also affect Qustodio's reporting is when Extreme alerts are disabled. You may find this option in the 'Messages Settings':
- Go to the 'Messages Settings' on the device.
- Look for the 'Emergency alert settings' and tap there.
- Tap on 'Emergency alerts'.
- Make sure the option 'Extreme alerts' is turned OFF.
Note. This feature is only available to Premium users and is not available on iOS devices yet. This feature is not available for Android tablets without calling feature.