Amazon allowing teens to shop online, all with parents' approval

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The new service should also make life a little easier for parents - a key demographic for Amazon - allowing them to create separate Amazon log-ins for their kids that they can monitor. By default, parents must approve every order but this can be tweaked in order to set a spending limit instead.

"As a parent of a teen, I know how they crave independence, but at the same time that has to be balanced with the convenience and trust that parents need", said Michael Carr, vice president of Amazon Households, in a statement. Through the Amazon App, teens can now shop or stream content while parents will have the right to approve all orders or preapprove spending limits for the child.

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The teen accounts are a part of Amazon Households, an existing Amazon feature that lets Prime members share accounts and payment methods with other family members. Now Amazon is giving that first solo-buying experience a digital makeover. If the parents subscribe to Amazon Prime, the teens will receive access to Prime-exclusive features like Prime Video and Twitch as well. Though many college students may come from households that share a Prime Membership, the option for a reduced-price Prime Student membership could be an attractive one for students living on their own.

For college students not willing to commit to a full year of Amazon Prime, the company announced Wednesday a new $5.49 monthly payment option called Amazon Prime Student.

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A screenshot of a text alert to a parent for a teen's purchase.

The idea here seems to be establishing an independent way for teenagers to begin taking over control of their own shopping, but not completely independently of their parents. And the company said kids won't be able to see their parent's credit card information.

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