Boomerang vs. Google RE: Call and SMS permissions

Boomerang vs Google update

The good news

We can continue to offer our Call and Text Message safety features, and all of our other features, via an easy and safe download on our website. This change is thanks to Google changing their policy for the Call and SMS permissions. We requested an exemption a few times by explaining the safety aspects of these features for our user base but simply received “quoted guideline” replies.

To ensure safe calling and safe texting features continue for you, it is essential to install the version from our download page on your child’s Android smartphone.

Support article: How to get Boomerang’s Call and SMS features

A few questions about our New Version

Do I install ON my parent device or child device?
We recommend all child smartphones get this version installed. For our parent mode it’s less important as it can still control this version. You can install this version on all family devices.

Do I just install on top of the Google Play version?
Yes! We designed this version to simply upgrade our Google Play version.

What if the Google Play version is installed on top of the sideloaded version?
If the Google Play version is installed on top of the version installed from our website, we will be aware of this and inform you in Parent Mode. Boomerang runs in the background when in Child Mode, Google typically doesn’t automatically update these types of apps, it requires a manual update by the user.

Going forward, how will I be made aware that there is an update?
1. We will email more often to our user base with major changes and provide release notes on our download page.
2. In Parent mode, we’ve added the child’s app version in the device title. We will show “outdated” if it’s older.
3. Later, we will look to add our own update service so we can notify within our app and update automatically for any “sideloaded” versions.

Do I need to purchase again?
No. This version sees everything retained as you set it up including your licensing information.

Call and Text monitoring was working but has now stopped. What happened?

Our app can still be manually updated via Google Play (it will not automatically update). Updating via Google Play will overwrite this version installed from our website that has the Call/SMS permissions. Simply visit our download page and install on top of the version on yoru child’s device. Parent Mode shows your child’s app version number when you tap on Manage Device with the following abbreviations:

-GP = a version from Google Play without Call/SMS permissions
-Sideload = the version from our website with Call/SMS permissions

I received a warning “This type of file can harm your device”. Is it safe to tap OK?

Absolutely. This is a normal prompt that Chrome provides when downloading programs outside of Google Play.

Boomerang Download File


Dad, Cyber Safety Influencer, Product Evangelist, Avid Cyclist, Hobbyist Musician. Battling the constant love/hate with tech.

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