Sign your child in on their Android device

When you use Family Link to create a Google Account for your child under 13 or the applicable age in your country, you can allow them to sign in to some Google services on their Android device. You can also allow your child to sign in on other devices.

How supervision works

When your child is signed in to their Android device with their Google Account, these parent-managed Google Account settings apply:

Other Family Link settings only work on Android devices, including:

  • Screen time limits
  • Device location
  • App activity
  • Blocking apps & app permissions

Sign in on an Android device

Once you've created an account for your child, you can use it to sign in on devices running Android 5 or higher.

Note: Devices running Android 5 or 6 may need to be set up using the steps for existing Android devices. Learn how to check your Android version.

New Android device
  1. When prompted, sign in with your child's Google Account email address and password.
  2. Follow the instructions on the screen to set up the device and install Family Link.
Factory reset Android device
  1. Factory reset the device. If you want, you can back up the data from the device and download it on another device before starting the factory reset.
  2. When prompted, sign in with your child's Google Account email address and password.
  3. Follow the instructions on the screen to set up the device and install Family Link.

Note: If you can’t sign your child in to their Android device after a factory reset, you may need to follow these steps.

Existing Android device

Devices running Android 5 or 6 may need to be set up using these steps.

  1. Delete any music, photos, videos, or other data you don’t want your child to be able to access. If you want, you can back up the data from the device and download it on another device.
  2. Open the device's Settings app.
  3. Tap Users & accounts.
  4. Remove any existing Google Accounts on the device by tapping the account and then Remove account.
  5. Tap Users & accounts and then Add account
  6. When prompted, sign in with your child's Google Account email address and password.
  7. Follow the instructions on the screen to set up the device and install Family Link.
If you can’t sign in

If you’re having trouble signing in with your child’s account, follow these steps:

Step 1: Add your parent account

  1. On your child’s device, open the Settings app Settings.
  2. Tap Users & accounts and then Add account.
  3. Sign in with the parent account you use with Family Link.

Step 2: Update Google Play services

  1. On your child’s device, go to the Google Play services page.
  2. Tap Update.

Step 3: Add your child’s account

  1. On your child’s device, open the Settings app Settings.
  2. Tap Users & accounts.
  3. Tap your parent account, and then tap Remove account.
  4. Tap Add account.
  5. Sign in with your child’s account.
Add a second profile to your child's device

The steps below will only work if your child's device allows multiple profiles.

Important: If you add other profiles, your Family Link settings for your child's account won't apply to those profiles. It's important to use security measures to protect additional profiles. This will help prevent your child from switching users and bypassing parental settings.

Step 1: Allow additional users

  1. Open the Family Link app Family Link.
  2. Select your child.
  3. On the card with your child's device, tap View settings.
  4. Turn "Add/Remove user" on.

Note: You can also manage this setting by clicking on your child's name at families.google.com.

Step 2: Add another user to the device

If the instructions below don't work, try searching the device's Help Center for instructions on adding another user. 

  1. On your child's Android device, open the Settings app.
  2. Tap Users and then Add user or profile.
  3. Follow the instructions on the screen to add another user.

Step 3: Set a screen lock for the new profile

  1. Make sure to set a screen lock for any new users you’ve created. This helps prevent your child from switching to this user to circumvent your parental settings.
  2. In Family Link, turn the "Add/Remove user" switch off to prevent further users from being added or deleted.

Step 4: Switch between users

  1. From the top of any Home screen, swipe down with two fingers.
  2. At the top right, tap Switch user People.
  3. Tap the user you want to switch to.

Erase your child's device

When you do a factory reset, your child's data is deleted from the device's internal storage, which includes their apps, photos, settings, and other user data. Your child's Google Account will be removed from the device. Also, parent management settings won't apply to the device anymore. 

Important: If you're erasing a device so someone else can use it, remove your child's account from the device first. If you don't, you'll need to sign in with your child's Google Account after the device is erased.

  1. Open the Family Link app Family Link.
  2. Select your child.
  3. On the card with their device's name, tap Settings and then Reset device & delete data. The device will turn black immediately, and the data on the device will start erasing. If the device is offline, the factory reset will happen as soon as it's back online.

If your child has an SD card in the device, your child might still have information saved to the SD card.

Note: You can also manage this setting by clicking on your child's name at families.google.com.

Remove your child's account from the device

When you remove your child's account from the device, information associated with that account is deleted from the device, including emails, contacts, device settings, and parent supervision settings.

  1. On your child's Android device, open the Family Link app Family Link.
  2. In the top left, tap Menu Menuand then Remove account.
  3. Select your email address, then enter your password to confirm.
  4. Tap Remove account.

If your child's device isn't connected to the Internet, use a parent access code to remove their account.

Fix password errors

"Wrong password. Try again."

This error is shown if your username and password combination is incorrect. Make sure there are no mistakes in your username or password when you try entering them again.

If you forgot your child's password, learn how to reset it.

"Your username and password don't match."

This error is shown if you're running a version of Android that's too old to work with Family Link. If you see this error, try updating your software to Android 6 or higher.

Sign in on other devices

With parental permission, your child can use their Google account to sign in on:

Note: Family Link’s parental supervision services may be limited depending on your child’s device.
page author courtney

Courtney is a Google for Families expert, and the author of this help page. Help her improve this page by leaving feedback below.

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