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4 Ways to Track My Child’s Phone without Them Knowing [2024]

Elsa Updated on Jan 3, 2024 Filed to: Parent Control

The world is becoming dangerous by the day. Social unrest, shootings, and bullying are a few issues arising from the absence of safety in many communities. Also, the internet has shown that there are many more security loopholes.

Are you a parent worried about your child's safety? If yes, how can we ensure that they are protected and safe? Easy! The best way is to track our child's location. Thus, this article will cover ways to keep our children safe by tracking their phones without them knowing.

track my child's phone without them knowing for free

Can I Track My Child's Phone without Them Knowing?

Yes. In many cases, especially if it is done for safety and security purposes, parents or legal guardians have the legal right to track their children's phones without their consent. But it is worth mentioning that when your kid is considered an adult by the country or state you live in, you'd better withdraw this monitoring action.

If you have no idea about when to start location tracking, we found a survey that shows parents start using location monitoring when their children are 3-5 years old. During this age, children want to explore the things and people around them. So you can also start tracking their location at this age of your child.

3 Free Ways to Track My Child without Them Knowing

This section discusses 3 main options to track a child's phone without them knowing for 100% free. Hence, you can pick the one that suits your need the most without being detected or grey-balled.

1. Find My Devices (Android)

If your child is using an Android phone, the built-in function called Find My Device can help you track your child's location. This feature was launched in 2013, and at that time, it was named Android Device Manager. Until 2017, it had this new name.

Location Tracking Features: Real-time location tracking with GPS

Here's How to Use:

  1. Step 1. First, add a Google account on your kid's phone, and Find My Device is automatically on.
  2. Step 2. Visit "Find My Device" and log in to the account that you used on your kid's phone.
  3. Step 3. Now, it reveals the location of your kid's phone with Google Map.
  4. Google Find My Device

Advantages of Using Find My Devices:

  • You can locate your kids without them knowing.

Disadvantages of Using Find My Devices:

  • When your kid's phone is off, or WiFi or mobile data is disabled, the location won't be captured.
  • It can't catch the location sometimes.

2. Find My (iPhone)

Similar to Android, iOS also has a dedicated location tracking feature to track its user's phones. As long as your kid's iPhone is running iOS 13 and above, the Find My app is integrated. This app is organized into several sections so you can easily find people, your own devices, and items. Yet, it need you to ask your child to share their location with you.

Location Tracking Features: Real-time location sharing via satellite, geofence

Here's How to Use:

  1. Step 1. On your kid's iPhone, fire up the "Find My" app.
  2. Step 2. From the bottom tab, select "People" and tap the "Start Sharing Location" button.
  3. Step 3. Then enter your phone number and tap "Send".
  4. Step 4. Select "Share Indefinitely".
  5. iPhone Find My sharing location

  6. Step 5. Now, on your iPhone's "Find My" app, you are able to view your kid's location and have the option to enable notifications when your kid arrives at or leaves a position.

Advantages of Using Find My:

  • It allows you to locate your kid's phone even though it is not connected to a network.

Disadvantages of Using Find My:

  • Your kid might find your monitoring and stop sharing location with you at any time.
  • Lacks support for Android child devices.

Alternatively, if you share the same Apple ID with your child, you can directly track your child's iOS device from the Devices tab.

3. Google Family Link (Android & iPhone)

Google Family Link is a free parental control app, but we suggest not to set other parental controls with it for tracking your kid's phone without their knowledge. Google Family Link is designed by Google to help parents monitor all digital activities their children are involved in. Surely, it also helps you track your child's Android phone. With it, you can also set up location alerts to know if your child leaves or reaches a particular destination.

Location Tracking Features: Real-time location sharing via satellite, geofence

Here's How to Use:

  1. Step 1. Download Google Family Link from App Store or Play Store on your device.
  2. Step 2. On your device, tap "Yes" if your child already has a Google Account and follow the on-screen instructions to complete the setup. If not, then tap "No" to create an account for your child.
  3. Step 3. On your child's Android phone, access "Google" with the "Settings" app.
  4. Step 4. Select "Parental Controls" to confirm this is your child's phone, and follow the prompts to proceed.
  5. Step 5. Now, launch Google Family Link and go to the "Location" tab where you will be able to see your child's current location with their phone battery level. But note Google Family Link takes a long time to track the position.
  6. location on Google Family Link

Advantages of Using Google Family Link:

  • You can customize location accuracy.
  • It supports supervising your child's phone without them notifying.

Disadvantages of Using Google Family Link:

  • The setup procedure is complex.
  • It can only track Android phones.
  • It's time-consuming to deliver the results.

Alternative Way to Track My Child without Them Knowing

AirDroid Family Locator is a full-feature app, especially if you are wondering, "How can I see everything on my child's phone without them knowing?". In addition to location tracking, AirDroid also allows you to see the screen from your kids' phones, track their screen time usage, and more. This app is hidden from your kids' sight, so they never know their phone is being tracked.

The most amazing part of this tracker is it also allows you to watch the surroundings around your child with the remote camera feature, which makes it stand out from the above methods. As it is a hidden tracker on your kid's phone, you can ensure their safety without following them anywhere, anytime.

AirDroid location tracking feature

Location Tracking Features: Real-time location tracking via GPS and WiFi, location history, geofence, and surroundings checking

Here's How to Use:

  1. Step 1. Download AirDroid Parental Control to your device from App Store or Play Store.
  2. google play blackapp store black
  3. Step 2. Then, install AirDroid Kids on your child's phone. This app will be hidden after the installation.
  4. Step 3. On AirDroid Kids, enter the on-screen passcode of your device and enable permissions to proceed.
  5. Step 4. Now, you can remotely view where your child is and where he has been by tapping the "Map" icon.
  6. Step 5. To see your child's whereabouts, just select "Remote Camera" on the "Device" tab.
  7. tap Remote Camera

Advantages of Using AirDroid Family Locator:

  • It is an invisible app on your kid's device, so you can secretly track your child's phone.
  • It allows you to check your kid's surrounding environment remotely.

Disadvantages of Using AirDroid Family Locator:

  • It is not free but offers a 3-day free trial.
  • It can only track Android devices.

How to Choose the Best Way to Locate Child's Phone

If you're still not sure which software can help you track your kid's phone better, you might want to check out our suggestions:

  • To track your child without them knowing, both Google Find My Device, Google Family Link, and AirDroid Family Locator work in 100% stealth mode.
  • To know your child's real-time location for free, Google Find My Device, Apple Find My, as well as Google Family Link deserve a try. But if you want to get more parental controls like app and screen time management, the versatile Google Family Link stand out from these three free options.
  • To track your kid's phone for more than just location, AirDroid Family Locator is a go-to option. By using it, you are able to see everything of your child's phone without them knowing, such as, monitor their phone screen, supervise their screen time usage, track their notifications and browsing history, etc.

Pros and Cons of Tracking Your Child's Phone

While it is good to track your child's phone, it is very important to compare the pros and cons of what you are about to do so you can make the best decision.

Tracking your child's phone gives you access to their location and probably what is going on around them so you can ensure their offline security. But some older children might feel tracking them without them knowing is a breach of privacy, which can breed distance between you and them. Also, it is vital to balance phone tracking and children's independence.

Here are some tips to help you make your decision:

Though our topic is tracking your child's phone without their knowledge, we still recommend you be honest about your intentions with your child and learn what he or she thinks about cell phone tracking through this conversion.

What's more, as a child grows to gain more independence and autonomy, you, as a parent, would better respect your child's privacy by stopping tracking appropriately and allowing them to make their own decisions whenever possible.

FAQs About Tracking My Child's Phone

Q1. How Can I Track My Child's Phone Without Installing an App?
You can track their phone through the built-in Google Find My feature. It doesn't allow you to install the app as long as your child's Google account has signed in. And for you, its web version enables you to see your kid's phone directly without installing it.
Q2. How Can I See Everything on My Child's Phone Without Them Knowing?
With the AirDroid Parental Control app, you can easily monitor your child's phone discreetly. Most phone monitoring apps are not invisible, while AirDroid works in complete stealth mode. It can show your kid's live screen on yours, watch your kid's surroundings, listen to your kid's voice, sync notifications from your kid's phone and more.
Q3. Can I Track My Child Without Giving Them a Phone?
Yes. To do so, some keychain-sized GPS trackers and GPS tracking bracelets are helpful. You can share your child's location with trusted adults, set geofences, get alerted when your kid gets out of bounds, and swipe between multiple children.
Q4. My Daughter Ran Away; How Can I Track Her Phone?
You can track her through a phone monitoring app, phone number tracking apps, through her carrier, and check if she has her phone's built-in tracking features enabled.
Q5. Can I Remotely Access My Daughter's iPhone?
Yes. Apple's family sharing features allow you to access your daughter's phone remotely.
Q6. Can My Child Uninstall the Tracking App?
No. Because most third-party tracking apps will require the parents to use a password to keep it from being deleted by their children, if the password is exposed, the app can then be deleted.
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Elsa has worked on a number of iOS & Android solutions, she can always find her way around almost any application. She is an accomplished, skilled and versatile writer with more than 7 years of technical article writing experience.
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