Even if you have Xbox One S or Xbox One X in your living room, you might not know how to use Xbox’s parental controls to adjust available content, monitor every purchase made, and set a stamp on how long it can be spent playing games or in applications social media for your children.
In this guide, we will direct you where to find these parental controls, what they can do, and how to manage screen time management on all your Windows and Microsoft devices when you use them.
There are many options for tracking screen usage on mobile (Google Dashboard for Android, and Screen Time for iPhone) but there are also a number of tools that you want when it comes to Windows PC consoles and games.
Along with several new text filtering tools, which allow you to censor abusive messages through the Xbox chat function, there are many ways to keep your Xbox a pleasant and clean place – at least in the messaging section.
A report by the Association of UK Interactive Entertainment found that only 19% of parents put parental control on their children’s devices. But even if you want to use it, you might not know where to look. For parents of children who play Xbox, this guide will help you find and use Xbox parental control tools.
Xbox parental controls: your Microsoft account
First things first! To edit any settings for your children, everything you need has your own Microsoft account, and a profile for each of your children.
On Xbox, you can log in with a Microsoft account to create your own profile, and choose an email or telephone confirmation to complete the setup (no need to enter any payment details).
Then go to the Xbox Home menu, and select ‘Add New’ at the top left of the screen.
You can add new profiles for your children, although each will require its own different email account to change settings between them. (You can set the total number of hours in four children, but you practically ask to fight.)
Xbox parental controls: set screen time limits
Fortunately if your children use an Xbox, Windows 10 PC or tablet, or even an Android phone, you can monitor and manage their screen time on all devices using the same interface. Simply open account.microsoft.com/family and log in with your Microsoft account. Any device that is linked to that account will appear.
There is everything that can set the hours a day each child can use certain applications (games, social media, etc.) on each device, for every day of the week. You can also set a maximum limit, so your child doesn’t squeeze 12 hours from the 9am to 9pm guidelines.
Worried about oversight? You can even set up weekly reports on your child’s screen usage, which is sent to children and parents – ensuring transparency in what information is shared.
Xbox parental controls: content restrictions
You might not have a problem with your children’s games or use a common application – you bought it Xbox, after all – but you might want to make sure children of a certain age don’t get access to explicit or overly mature content. For example, Mortal Kombat is not a game for seven-year-olds.
All you need to do is press the Xbox button (big circular X in the middle of the controller) and go to Settings> All Settings. Then open System> Restricted content that has exited> Access to content. You can choose general age settings for all applications and software (fast!) Or adjust between various applications (not fast enough). That includes limiting access to social media applications such as Facebook and Twitter – and any age restrictions will also exclude content from the Netflix application on the Xbox console.
Xbox parental controls: purchase controls
Don’t you want your kids to spend thousands of dollars on Fortnite V-Bucks or in-game purchases? It’s easy to make sure every purchase through your child’s profile requires parental approval.
Go to Settings> All Settings> Account, and select Sign in, security & wrench. Here you can set a wrench for every purchase made through the console, keeping your credit card safe from small hands.
Xbox parental controls: privacy
Many of the games your kids play may be online, and strangers online aren’t invested because you make sure your kids have a positive experience. However, you can limit online games so that they only play with people they know, or turn off voice chat and uncompromising communication.
Go to Settings> All Settings> Account> Family, and adjust your settings regarding Privacy and online security.
Xbox parental controls: chat filters
Just want to stop yourself – or the people in your family – from receiving rude messages? Online gamers have gained a reputation in part for sending poisonous messages, and the new Xbox filter system allows you to choose one of four filter settings to censor various levels of curses and abuse that you can adjust to your personal preferences.
Four filter levels are offered: ‘friendly’ (set as the default for child accounts) eagerly inspect the offensive words or phrases and block them; ‘is’ blocking words known for their discriminatory nature; ‘adult’ only hides explicit words explicitly; ‘unfiltered’ is any arrangement for the potty’s mouth.
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