KoalaSafe is a router with parental controls that lets you manage the time your child spends online, by creating a dedicated wifi network at home that you can set time limits on - as well as block inappropriate content and see usage analytics - using a smartphone app.
Alternatively, you could interact with your children, setting and enforcing boundaries yourself.
"It all began as an idea back in 2014 after my nephew got an iPad for Christmas and was spending all his time playing Minecraft," CEO and Co-Founder of KoalaSafe Steven Pack explains. "One idea lead to another and KoalaSafe came to fruition in March 2015 as a successful crowdfunded campaign."
Sorry, but before I continue, I just have to say I find it odd that there seems to be a few steps missed here. Setting time limits on screen time - even the active technology that has proven to be good for growing minds, like creative video games - can happen with a conversation. Talk your children. Tell them how long they have. Check on them when the time is up. I know we live busy lives, but surely it isn't that difficult? It's what I do.
And it works.
Three years down the track and KoalaSafe is a rapidly growing start up, in 21 countries across North and South America, Asia and Europe. and is even hitting Target shelves as we speak. So there's definitely a market for this.
I know I'm coming from a position of privilege having a decent amount of technology literacy, but surely we don't need devices to tell our kids to stop playing Minecraft past bedtime?
Contributing to its success is that KoalaSafe doesn't charge a monthly fee for its service, and the appeal of a "separate network" for the kids must put alot of people's minds at ease.
Pack says KoalaSafe creates a "healthier, happier technology environment at home". I'd argue an even better option is being involved in your child's online activities, supervision, negotiation of screen time limits, and generally being a little more hands on.
What are your thoughts?