Microsoft's Family Safety app: How to get the preview and protect your kids online

Microsoft is rolling out a limited preview of its Family Safety app.

Shelby Brown Editor II
Shelby Brown (she/her/hers) is an editor for CNET's services team. She covers tips and tricks for apps, operating systems and devices, as well as mobile gaming and Apple Arcade news. Shelby also oversees Tech Tips coverage. Before joining CNET, she covered app news for Download.com and served as a freelancer for Louisville.com.
  • She received the Renau Writing Scholarship in 2016 from the University of Louisville's communication department.
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The Microsoft Family app is rolling out for preview.

Angela Lang/CNET

A limited preview of the Microsoft Family Safety app is now available for iOS and Android. The app is meant to help parents find a digital balance, giving their kids digital independence while still setting boundaries, Microsoft said in a recent release. 

The Family Safety app can help start conversations about internet safety and screen time limits. In addition, the app offers content controls and activity reporting -- like top websites visited, terms searched and location sharing. Microsoft said it plans to add safety driving features in the coming months as well. 

Read more: Best apps to put on kids' phones to keep them safe online during lockdown

The app is currently only available as a limited preview, with the goal of collecting feedback and making improvements before it's rolled out to the public. But here's how you can try to get approved for the preview: 

1. Make sure you have a family group set up through Microsoft. If not, you can create one

2. Fill out the form that is generated.

3. Read the privacy statement and accept.

4. Submit the form. 

Microsoft first announced the Family Safety app in March as a part of two different 365 experiences planned for rollout in the coming months. 

For more, check out how to get Microsoft Office 365 for free.

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