A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this app.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Yoursphere is a just-for-kids social-media app. The app and the website version of Yoursphere are similar to other social-networking sites, such as Facebook, but they're only for kids 17 and under. Content is centered on "spheres" that include relevant, kid-popular topics such as pets, sports, and fashion. Yoursphere includes extra safeguards for kids younger than 13. For users 12 and younger, parents must verify knowledge of the account and go through a background check before the kid is allowed to create a username. Some features on Yoursphere's website were not available on the app at the time of this review.
What's it about?
For kids under the age of 13, parents must first enter all information necessary for a background check. Kids age 13 to 17 can register for an account on YOURSPHERE with their own date of birth, gender, and email. Then they can begin to post photos and status updates, tap on "spheres" to join groups and view the Yoursphere members in those groups, comment on posts, and like posts. Kids also can send and receive friend requests and chat.
There's lots for kids to do on this app, although not as much as on the full Yoursphere website.
Is it any good?
The Yoursphere app may not be as complete as the website, but it can be a good mobile alternative for Yoursphere enthusiasts on the go. The "spheres" based on topics may be an especially good way for kids to learn positive social networking with other kids who're interested in similar topics, such as pets, fashion, or sports. The app works and looks a lot like the Facebook app, but it has kids-only content and images. The clunky parent-verification process requires that parents of Yoursphere users under age 13 enter significantly personal information for a background check (and jump back and forth from the app to the website to link to their kid's account), which may be off-putting to some parents not willing to give that information or jump through so many hoops for one registration process. Reading comments and commenting on posts may prove difficult on the app version (they're a bit squished at the bottom of the screen) for kids used to the website version. Still, this app is a well-organized, limited version of the Yoursphere website.
Talk to your kids about ...
Read Common Sense Media's social-networking tips.
Even though this is a for-kids-only app with lots of safety features, remind your kid that nothing online is 100 percent protected, so the same rules against sharing personal information apply on Yoursphere.
Talk about the different "spheres" your kid can join on Yoursphere. In fun categories including academics and travel to gaming and music, your kid can browse and post relevant information.
- Device: Android
- Skills: Thinking & Reasoning: decision-making
Communication: friendship building, multiple forms of expression
Responsibility & Ethics: following codes of conduct, honoring the community, making wise decisions, respect for others
Tech Skills: social media
- Pricing structure: Free
- Release date: May 4, 2014
- Category: Social Networking
- Topics: Friendship
- Size: 14.80 MB
- Publisher: Yoursphere Media
- Version: 1.1
- Minimum software requirements: iOS 6.0 or later
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.