Windows Phone 8 multi-user security with Kid’s Corner

windows 8_logoWindows Phone 8 offers a separate Start screen for parental control called ‘Kid’s Corner’ (used to be known as Kid’s Zone). The separate Start screen allows for children to access and share apps, videos, games and music that is shared by the parent.

Aside of security, privacy and parental control, Kids Corner also stops your child from accidentally erasing your phone data. Your child will also be unable to get to the rest of your stuff. Remember, only you (the parent) can add items to Kid’s Corner, but children can open and use it on their own (obviously if they know the password).

As a parent, I know only too well the importance of having control of my mobile devices and the applications that I have installed. So it’s even more important to make sure you have a ‘lock screen’ password. If you haven’t set your password, don’t worry as I explain how to do this below. The main reason for doing this is, this will stop your child from accessing your Start screen. Firstly though, let’s look at how we setup ‘Kid’s Corner’ on the Nokia Lumia 920 running Windows Phone 8.

How to setup Kid’s Corner

  • Swipe left to the App list and scroll down (or click search icon and type ’S’) > Settings
  • Scroll right or left until you find > system applications
  • Scroll down and tap > kid’s corner
  • To add content to Kid’s Corner, tap > Games, Music, Videos or Apps*, select the items you want to add, then tap > Done (tick)
  • When you are finished adding content, tap > Next
  • Next up – set your lock screen password. Tap > Set password, type your password and then tap > Done
  • You should now see ‘Finished!’ – tap > finish and Kid’s Corner will be turned on
  • You have the option of pinning Kid’s Corner to your Start screen

*If you notice that any of these options are greyed out, it is because you don’t have any content to add to Kid’s Corner.

TIP: To turn Kid’s Corner on and off in the App list – tap > Settings > Kid’s Corner

How to use Kid’s Corner

  • On the main lock screen (not password screen), swipe left to the Kid’s Corner lock screen
  • Flick up to enter Kid’s Corner and enter the password – that’s it
  • To exit Kid’s Corner at any time you can hit the Power Button
  • Note: Your child will be unable to add items to Kid’s Corner unless they have access to your Start Screen & Password

Some important points to consider:

  • If your phone is set to lock itself automatically after a period of inactivity (which most devices would be I hope 🙂 ), you might need to enter your lock screen password before your child can open Kid’s Corner
  • If your child taps a web link from an app or game you’ve added to Kid’s Corner, they’ll be able to access that webpage in the browser and follow any links they find there. Your child will not be able to go to other web pages by typing a web address into the native browser

Lastly, I will be reviewing Wallet in Windows Phone 8 towards the end of this month, however I wanted to point out something parents should be aware of regarding in-app purchasing and Kid’s Corner. By default you cannot make any Windows Phone Store purchases from Kid’s Corner. That said, if you set up a Wallet PIN on your phone, your child would be able to make in-app purchases (such as game points or levels) from Kid’s Corner if they know your Wallet PIN. Don’t let your children ever know your Wallet PIN, otherwise you might end up with some serious ‘bill shock’!

Safe surfing folks!

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