The app world is ever changing to keep up with the short attention span of youngsters everywhere. We bring you a guide to the latest app your child will be talking about and the potential risk each app might bring:
Whatsapp lets users send text messages, audio messages, videos, and photos to one or many people with no message limits or fees.
What your kids are most likely to be doing: Messaging friends and in group chats. Sending photos and videos of what happened last night.
Risk factor: Mild. Whatsapp is a relatively safe app as your child usually chooses to text those on his contact list only – that makes it mainly friends whom he knows in real life.
Instagram lets users snap, edit, and share photos and 15-second videos, either publicly or with a private network of followers. It unites the most popular features of social-media sites: sharing, seeing, and commenting on photos. It also lets you apply fun filters and effects to your photos, making them look high quality and artistic.
What your kids are most likely to be doing: Taking a photo of what is now coined as “Instagram-worthy moments”, your child can be found taking photos or videos of anything from food, scenery, family and friends, then playing with various filters offered by Instagram to make the photo look artistic and professional before uploading it on the app.
Risk factor: Mild. As with all photo apps, there is a risk that your child might be exposed to crude or violent images but the risk is minimal as the Instagram community has build up a culture of sharing artistic photos over offensive ones. However, Instagram also works on a system of popularity - your child will be after “likes” on his photos and increasing his following which could lead to him being more interested in reel-life connections than real-life ones.
Snapchat is a messaging app that lets users put a time limit on the pictures and videos they send before they disappear. Most youngsters use the app to share goofy or embarrassing photos without the risk of them going public.
What your kids are most likely to be doing: Taking a video of themselves being all silly, adding captions to their videos which make it more humorous and then choosing friends to send it to.
Risk factor: Average. Snapchat can be dangerous if your child chooses to video offensive materials or if videos are sent to the wrong person.
Tinder is a photo and messaging dating app for browsing pictures of potential matches within a certain-mile radius of the user's location. It's largely used among youngsters as a way to meet new people for casual or long-term relationships.
What your kids are most likely to be doing: Swiping left for people they are not interested in and right for people they are.
Risk factor: High. Users meet all sorts of people on Tinder and anyone you swipe right can message you to start chatting. As the people you are chatting with are all strangers, you never know what background or topics they will converse. Some will also initiate meet-ups which can potentially go wrong.
Twitter is a microblogging site that allows users to post brief, 140-character messages -- called "tweets" -- and follow other users' activities. It's not only for adults; youngsters like using it to share tidbits and keep up with news and celebrities.
What your kids are most likely to be doing: Tweeting short updates and captions on what he is doing at the moment, following celebrities or re-tweeting a friends’ status.
Risk factor: Mild. You can’t say much in 140 characters.