Parents will soon have increased supervision over teenagers using Quest devices, with linked teen accounts and content restriction tools coming soon.
Quest devices are only intended for use by people over the age of 13, as per Meta’s terms of service. Announced today, new platform-level control features will give parents more say in what their children experience on Quest devices. There are multiple changes and new features gradually rolling out as part of this overhaul, as announced on the Oculus Blog.
The first of these arrives in April, when the unlock pattern feature on Quest will expand its functionality so it can be used to lock access to specific apps, not just the entire device.
Then in May, Meta will automatically block teenager accounts from being able to download content that is deemed age-inappropriate by its IARC rating. If content is rated for an age that is above the age of the user, the user will be automatically blocked from accessing it. In the same month, Meta will launch an initial wave of parental supervision tools for Quest and the accompanying Oculus mobile app. Part of these tools will allow parents to override the aforementioned blocks on a case-by-case basis.
The tools also include a ‘Parent Dashboard’ on the Oculus mobile app, where parents can link a teenager account. Linked teenager accounts will also be able to send requests for the aforementioned overrides, which can be approved or denied by the parent.
The Parent Dashboard will also allow parents to block access to certain apps on their children’s headset, view all the apps owned by the teenager, monitor screen time and friend lists, and block PC VR connections through Link and Air Link.
We reached out to Meta to clarify how these changes relate to the shift away from requiring Facebook accounts to access Quest headsets, as announced at Connect last year. Here is Meta’s response:
Yes, a Facebook account will be required for both parents and teens at this time. While incorporating external feedback, we’ve been working to support VR parental supervision tools for users with Facebook log-in, while also preparing for parental supervision tools to support the new account log-in options for Quest devices mentioned at Connect last year.