Just in time for the back-to-school season, Tech Talker focuses on 4 great ways technology can help keep your family organized and connected.
Cell Phone Tracking
This is a very sticky subject. When it comes to children and smartphones. I’ve heard almost every argument in favor of tracking your child’s phone--and I also know people who never even turn the service on.
On one hand, I can agree that as a parent, you’d want to know where your child is at all times. However, I can also understand that at some point, there needs to be an element of trust between you and your children. These are discussions to have as a family, and I in no way support one decision over another. Every situation is different.
That being said, I love Apple’s “Find My Friends App." This app allows you to see the locations of all of your friends who invite you to see their location. You can also set expiration times, so that friends can only follow you for a certain period of time.
It sounds really creepy, but it has some very valid uses. If you’re hanging out with friends at a large amusement park, for example, it can make finding everyone and meeting up much easier. At home, you could only turn this app on when your child is waiting to be picked up from school, so you can easily see where they are in relation to you.
The downside with this app is that it only works for Apple products. Android also has its own version of this, also titled, “Find my Friends!,” however, it only works between Android devices. I highly recommend checking these out, though, just so you know if it’s something you might be interested in.
Many phones also have features that allow you to find a lost phone or device. I highly recommend turning this feature on, as well, as an emergency means of location should the need arise.
A Group List
Last but not least, set-up a simple shared Google document (now that you all have Google accounts) that you can include any lists on, as well as any to do items, or emergency information. This will help keep all of the information synced up for everyone at once.
As a low tech suggestion, I would print out any emergency documentation and store it in multiple places, such as the glove box, lockers, backpacks, wallets, etc. This list should include names, phone numbers, and addresses of important people and places. This way if your phone dies, you’re not lost!
With that, here;s a recap of your 4 Quick and Dirty Tips to keeping the family oranized and up-to-date:
- Create a share Google calendar for your family so that everyone knows what’s going on
- Set up a free Google voice number to ring all of your phones
- If you’re interested in sharing your location, check out “Find My Friends” or similar apps
- Create a shared Google document with important information, lists, and contacts.
Well, that’s it for today! Be sure to check out all my earlier episodes at techtalker.quickanddirtytips.com. And if you have further questions about this podcast, or want to make a suggestion for a future episode, post them on Facebook.com/QDTtechtalker.
Until next time, I’m the Tech Talker, keeping technology simple!