Dad loves Surface


Mt. Rainier

I have given a surface to my daughter. A lot of my friends/family ask me how I like using Surface and whether my daughter likes it as well. I can tell you that the killer feature from dad’s point of view is Family Safety. I am not an iPad/Android user, so I do not know how they do in this area, but I love the capability in Windows. In my humble opinion this is pretty under-sold and a lot of parents are unaware of this gem.

You just need to follow the steps at http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows/set-up-family-safety to set it up either for a new account or for your child’s existing Microsoft account. Once you do just head onto https://familysafety.microsoft.com/

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Tap/click into your child’s account and you can setup various things. I use all of them including time restrictions, app restrictions.

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I get weekly email with her activity report and can ding her on the time she spends on Netflix.

Also I get an email when she tries to install weird games. And no I’m not going to allow her to use Gangnam Guy

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Setting daily time limits and curfew hours is fun 🙂

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When she goes out of this time range Surface locks up with a screen asking her to take the device to a parent to unlock. I can use my live ID and extend her hours if I so want. Now the main problem is to say no to such a cute face 🙂

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Comments (4)

  1. Mayur Tendulkar says:

    Even my mom loves Windows 8 tablet (Acer Iconia & my Surface). She could manage to install lots of games and try everything on her own. And I think, this is the success for Windows. Family Safety and Store has made everything simpler.

  2. Matt says:

    I'm starting to wish we weren't so heavily vested in the Android platform now, or I'd switch just for this. My kids are getting up there now (9&10) and are getting sneakier at abusing their privileges. Android/Google really doesn't seem to offer anything at all, while MS's approach looks pretty good!

  3. Heller says:

    It's really nice, it's got to be a copy of a NSA's interface to our own Microsoft services usage.

  4. Stewart says:

    Great post – I just discovered MS's Family Safety as well.  Have it installed in our Windows 7 laptop and Windows 8.1 desktop, where it offers the same features as what you describe for Surface.  Nice to have a consistent experience across platforms.  

    My 10-year old son is now set up with an email address that I can monitor through the same interface using O365 (Office 365), and the web browsing settings can be adjusted differently to meet the needs of both my 10 year old and 6 year old.  Love the peace of mind.