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Verizon offers data usage controls, makes parents more uncool

Verizon's Usage Controls service allows customers to tailor their families' phone and data usages

As if being a kid weren't hard enough, teenagers all over the country may have another reason to cry out in angst: Verizon is offering customers new data restrictions under its Usage Controls service.

Verizon Wireless

Previously, Verizon customers who used Usage Controls were able to only restrict voice and texting capabilities of members who belonged under their family plans.

Today, however, the carrier announced that its Usage Controls service will now extend to manage data usage as well.

Content purchases, including games, apps, and ringtones, can also be restricted. All for the steep price of $4.99 per line, per month.

Aside from letting individuals budget out monthly voice, messaging, and data usage allowances, users can also prevent family members from calling, texting, or using data during specific times of the day and/or days of the week. This comes pretty handy if you want to make sure your kid won't be texting during school hours or downloading apps at 3 in the morning.

Customers can also block certain phone numbers from ever contacting their family members altogether, while also setting up a list of "trusted contacts"--specific numbers that'll always be reachable regardless of Usage Controls limitations.

And if any phone under the family plan dials 911, users can set up a notification that will allow owners to receive a text message whenever the emergency number is called.

If you're a Verizon customer, have extra money to spare per month, and can't stand the thought of giving yet another eye-rolling-inducing lecture about phone usage, you can sign up for Usage Controls at My Verizon.