JusTalk Kids - Safe Video Chat

App review by
Patricia Montic..., Common Sense Media
JusTalk Kids - Safe Video Chat App Poster Image
Slimmed-down version of adult chat app; use with caution.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

With adult guidance, kids can learn how to use social media responsibly and use digital citizenship skills. 

Ease of Play

There aren't many features, but it can be hard to tell whether you've used them correctly; for example, it's not clear when you've successfully added a contact or not.

Violence
Language
Consumerism

There are no in-app purchases or ads. 

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that JusTalk Kids - Safe Video Chat is a version of an encrypted text and video messenger app for teens and adults called JusTalk Video Chat & Messenger. The kids' version of the app includes fewer features than the full version, but it lacks some basic parental controls that parents might expect, like the ability to link and manage a child's account with an adult account to manage child's contacts and other activity. And it's possible for kids to use their account to log in to the adult version of the app. The kids' version has no ads or in-app purchases and is free, unlike the adult version, which requires a paid subscription to remove ads and add additional features. Read the developer's privacy policy for details on how your (or your kids') information is collected, used, and shared and any choices you may have in the matter, and note that privacy policies and terms of service frequently change.

User Reviews

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What's it about?

JUSTALK KIDS - SAFE VIDEO CHAT is a chat and video messenger app that enables kids to connect with other users and users of JusTalk Video Chat & Messenger, a messenger for teens and adults with more features from the same developer. To set up the app, adults download it to a phone or tablet, sign up for an account with a phone number or create a new user ID, and then add other users as friends by typing in their user ID or scanning a QR code from the other user's device. Users can then send text messages and start video and/or voice chats with their friends, and video chats include tools for drawing, adding stickers, and playing a Flappy Bird-like game. There's also an option to record the screen during phone calls, which other callers can reject, and you can also instantly share screenshots from the app on social media or via email or text message. Users can also save images from their chats to a gallery on the device.

Is it any good?

While the "kid-friendly" game and stickers are amusing and the video quality is good, this slimmed-down version of the full JusTalk app doesn't necessarily protect kids' privacy or make for a safer chatting environment. On the upside, the kids' version of the app has fewer features and doesn't feature any ads, and it's positive that no one can chat with you unless you manually add them as your friend. However, JusTalk Kids - Safe Video Chat lacks some of the basic privacy features that parents may expect in an app developed for kids, like the ability to create a "parent" account in order to monitor and control the kid's account. As it is, the main difference between the two apps is how you add contacts: In JusTalk Kids, you have to complete a multiplication problem, and then you can add a contact via his or her username or by scanning the QR code from the other person's device. What's most concerning is that there doesn't seem to be a meaningful difference between an account created on the JusTalk Kids app and an account created on the app's full version, so you can simply use your kid account to log in to the adult version of the app. While this probably won't be a problem with little kids, tweens might be savvy enough to try their login on the adult version of the app and have access to different features -- and people. Overall, this is an OK messenger app, but if parents want total control over their kid's experience in the form of a parent account, they should look elsewhere.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about being smart about what and how they share online in general and in JusTalk Kids - Safe Video Chat. Read our Parent Concerns guide to Facebook, Instagram, and Social and start your family's own conversation about your family's rules for using social media. 

  • Talk about interacting safely and kindly online. How did your family choose your contacts? Why did we pick those people? What types of messages is it OK to send? What should you avoid?

  • Discuss types of communication and what works best for different situations. What kind of communication works best in a messaging app? What's best over the phone or in person? 

App details

For kids who love social networking

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