For the past couple months I've been building a mobile app to help protected families from the negative content they can be exposed to on smartphones. The idea originally came to me a year or so ago when someone close to me was struggling with a pornography addiction. At that time I researched existing software out there (see http://tech.lds.org/wiki/Mobile_devices_(Family_Safety)
) and couldn't find the right solution for my friend.
Each of the solutions I found had atleast two of the following negative attributes:
1. Couldn't handle okay sites that sometimes have bad content on them (think instagram/facebook/google-images/snapchat/texting/etc.)
2. Only worked on home wifi--which means once you're off wifi and using mobile data the solution stops working
3. Only works for a special web browser app--using a different app gets around the "protection"
4. Requires you to jailbreak/root your phone.
5. Costs lots of money
So an idea came to me... What if I built an app that just periodically took snapshots of my friends phone screen and then sent them over to my phone? I could help him be accountable, and it would help him be accountable for all the sexually graphic content on snapchat/facebook/instagram/pinterest as well as the pornography.
As best I could tell, that idea handled #1, #2, #3, #4, and #5 perfectly. At that time I was still in school though so I set the idea aside.
Move foward a few years. Last December I married my (amazing) wife--who just happens to be from Germany. We decided to take a 3 month trip to spend time with her parents/family in Germany since I hadn't met all of them and had hardly spent anytime with her parents. At this time my oldest nephew just turned 12, so my sister was trying to decide when the right time to get him a cellphone was--and whether she should get him a smartphone or a... dumbphone. After several discussions with my sister and my wife, I decided I'd spend my downtime in Germany working on the app.
I'm now back from the 3 month trip, and the Android app is coming together (although the user interface (aka look of the app) is still very basic). I've decided to call the app NetCountable. By the first week of December I plan on releasing a Beta version of the app. I'm looking for people who're willing to help bug test it with me. I would greatly appreciate it.If you would like to be a beta tester, please sign up using this link: https://goo.gl/forms/hhPuClt6IxNDZW3h1.
I'll be emailing you directly from firstname.lastname@example.org
with access to the Beta app the first week of December.
In order to be a beta tester, I ask that you:
* Have 2 Android devices--one for the Accountability partner (parent/spouse), and one for the child (or spouse). (Kindle fire's are Androids by the way).
* Give me feedback and send any bug crashes to me (an email will pop up when the app crashes, with all sorts of details about the crash--you just click "send").
Here a few screenshots of my phone running the app.
One other thing I should mention--the app is built in a way so it can have multiple accountability partner's if you want. And each accountability partner can have snapshots taken of their phone and sent to the other partner as well. My wife and I find this helpful to help protect us and our marriage in general.
Feel free to ask any questions that you have.