Xbox Parental Controls

Xbox provides parents with a range of in-platform controls to manage things like what information is visible through a profile, who your child can communicate with, the account status and gaming history, among other things. Here is our guide to setting up these controls on Xbox.

Written by Tech Expert:

Jessica Hill

Using the in-platform controls available on gaming consoles is an important step to help you manage kids’ screen-time and safety while gaming. In order to make use of the parental controls that Xbox offers, you will first need to create a Microsoft Family Group.

Creating a Microsoft Family Group

Microsoft Family Group is a free service that helps keep kids safer on Xbox One and Windows 10 devices. In order to set up Microsoft Family Group, you will require the following:

  • Internet access
  • At least one 'parent' Microsoft Account
  • Individual Microsoft Accounts for each child using the device
  • Access to your child's email account, or one created for this purpose

Creating a Microsoft Family Group on PC

Microsoft will email or text an invitation to each person you want to add and they'll need to accept to join the Family Group. If you're adding an account for a young child, you can set up an email address and monitor it.

To add a member to your family group:

  1. Go to family.microsoft.com.

  2. Select Create a Family Group.

  3. Sign in with your parent Microsoft account, then select Add a Family Member.

  4. Select Member.

  5. Enter an email address or phone number for the child you want to add, then select Send Invite.
    Note: If the child you're adding is already part of another Family Group, they'll first need to be removed from that Family Group, or they'll need a new Microsoft account for your Family Group.

  6. Accept your invitation from the email or text message they receive.

  7. Select ‘my parent can sign in now’. Then sign back in to your parent account, accept the legal terms, choose whether your child can sign in to third-party apps, and select Continue.

Creating a Microsoft Family Group on Xbox One

In most cases your child would have already created their own Xbox Live account so that they can play online and get the most out of their console. The steps below reflect this scenario, that you have a Microsoft Family Group and you want to add your child’s existing Xbox account to your parent account. If your case doesn’t match this setup then you can find additional help here.

Press the Xbox button to open the guide, then select Sign in and sign in with your parent account.

  1. Press the Xbox button again and select System > Settings > Account > Family settings > Manage family members > Add to family.
  2. Select the profile for the person you want to add, then press the A button on your controller.

Once you have successfully added your child to your Microsoft Family Group, you can start managing them.

Setting Screen-Time Limits

To set screen time limits for your child on Xbox One

1. Go to your family group and sign in with your Microsoft account.

2. Find your child's name and select Screen time.

3. Here you will see and be able to set screen-time limits for your child’s Xbox device on a day-by-day basis. By default, Max scheduled will be on, which means they can use the device for the full time range you've given them.

5. If you edit your schedule choices, select Add, and then select Save.

Help your child get the most out of the screen time:

  • Have your child sign out if they're not actively using their console. Screen time counts down only during the time a child is signed in.

  • Give your kids a heads up on Xbox when their screen time is running out. On your Xbox controller, press the Xbox button to bring up the guide, then go to Profile & system (your account icon) > Settings > Preferences > Notifications > Xbox notifications > System, and then select System notifications on.

Setting App and Game Limits

  1. Go to family.microsoft.com and sign in with your Microsoft account.

  2. Find your child's name and select App and game limits

  3. Find the app or game you want to set limits on.

  4. Here, you can block certain games that you don’t want your child playing, or set time limits for specific games.