March 29, 2022 3 min read

Meta Launches VR Parental Supervision Tools for Quest

Quest is rolling out parental supervision tools for VR to all Quest headsets over the next few months. It follows Meta's plan to provide platform-level controls for parents to help keep their teens in VR.

According to Meta, starting this April, they will begin to allow people more customized control over their VR experience with Quest. They will be expanding the functionality of their existing unlock pattern on all Quest headsets. The update will allow parents to prevent their teens from accessing certain games and content that aren't age-appropriate.

Then in May, Meta will automatically block teens from downloading or purchasing any apps that aren't rated age-appropriate for them. By this time, Meta will also launch an initial suite of tools in our Parent Dashboard.

Here are the three crucial details you need to know about this update:

 

Expand Unlock Pattern on Quest

The first update Quest will have this following month is expanding the unlock pattern's functionality on Quest headsets. It is to give a more customized control on their VR experience. 

Setting up an unlock pattern on the Meta QuestVR gaming headset provides an extra layer of security for you and your account. You can use this to prevent others from accessing your device or any of your saved passwords.

Starting in April, Meta will introduce a feature for users to use the unlock pattern to lock specific apps directly from their VR headset. Once an app is locked, you will need to draw a pattern to open the app and launch it. 

This feature is designed to enable parents to prevent their teens from accessing any VR experiences that they may feel aren't age-appropriate for their children.

Meta VR Parental Supervision

Auto Block Age-Inappropriate Apps

In May 2022, Meta will automatically block teens ages 13 and above from purchasing or downloading any age-inappropriate apps. The rating used by Meta to base the apps are from the International Age Rating Coalition.

During this time, Meta will also launch the initial parental supervision tools for Meta. As the developers explained, different teens have different maturity levels. With this in mind, they believe the parents know their teens best and offer the ability for parents to override the app blocks on a case-by-case basis.

Meta offers these customizable controls, adjustable settings, and teen autonomy. The company believes the importance of these features is to make parents feel secure that their teens are safe in the online world.

Teens with parental supervision tools will also be able to request permission to override any blocks present in their headsets. Parents are then the ones who can decide whether to approve or deny these requests.

Meta further explained that they worked with professionals and experts in the field to apply these changes to Quest. Some of the people they worked with are Dr. Michael Rich from Digital Wellness Lab and Larry Magid from Connect Safely. Meta also asked for the help of Jutta Kroll from Stiftung Digitale Chancen and Janice Richardson from Insight SA.

These people helped Meta create their approach on the parental supervision updates they were developing. They also provided information for the developers to further understand how they can meet the community's needs.

 

Parent Dashboard

The next update is the Parent Dashboard, and this feature is fully accessible from the Oculus mobile app. It will enable parents to link their teen's account via a process done by the teen. The link will be approved with consent from both sides.

According to Meta, this will be the starting point for them to grow and evolve their parental supervision tools. And together with their collaboration with industry experts, they hope to further improve these suites of parental supervision tools in the future.

Meta Launches VR Parental Supervision

Here are some of the features you need to know about the Parent Dashboard:

  • Parents can approve their teen's download or purchase an app if it is blocked by default based on its rating.
    • Teens will have to submit an Ask to Buy request, which will send a notification to the Parent Dashboard.
    • Parents can approve or deny the request from the Oculus App.
  • Parents can block specific apps they believe may be inappropriate for their teens. This will prevent the teen from launching those apps.
  • Parents can view all of the apps their teens download and own.
  • Parents will receive Purchase Notifications whenever their teen purchases in VR.
  • Parents can also view headset screentime from the app to know how much time their teen spends in VR.
  • Parents can also view their teen's list of friends in Oculus.
  • Parents can also block Link or AirLink to prevent access to content from a PC.

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To know more details about this update, you can read the full details onFacebook News.



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