Comcast introduced a new WiFi parental control feature that automatically pauses network connectivity in the home to all of a child’s devices once their daily time limit is reached. The company stated that an annual study by Common Sense Media, the majority of parents (68%) feel their teens use their mobile devices (such as smartphones and tablets) too much. The new Xfinity xFi feature provides parents with an easy way to set a specific amount of time their children can be online each day. Once those time limits are met, children’s devices will automatically pause connections to the home WiFi network, giving parents peace of mind even when they are not at home.
“Xfinity xFi was designed to provide simple tools to help our customers see and control all the things connected to their home WiFi network,” said David Puckett, Vice President of xFi and Digital Security Product Management. “As a dad with four kids, I know how hard it can be to keep tabs on how long everyone has been online every day, especially during the summer. This latest feature is a great way for parents to better manage their children’s screen time.”
To enable the new parental control pause feature, xFi users should go to the main xFi page and select the child’s account or profile. Users should then scroll down and tap ‘Edit’ next to Active Time Limit. Parents can check ‘Weekdays’ and/or ‘Weekends’ to activate the days you want your child to access the home WiFi network. You can then toggle the options to set the time limit that, once reached, will automatically pause the connection to your child’s devices. The last step is to tap ‘Apply Changes.’
Once the settings are in place, once a child has reached his or her daily limit, the home WiFi connection to all devices associated with the profile will be paused. At any time, parents also can unpause or set a new time limit.
Ellen Pack, President of Common Sense, said, “Parents are clamoring for help in managing screen time, and xFi’s new pause feature demonstrates that it is possible to make tech products work better for all of us. These new tools will help families create tech-free times and zones at home – including dinner and bedtime – and will go a long way to establishing healthy limits for the whole family.”
Xfinity xFi can be accessed via the xFi mobile app (iOS and Android), website, or on the TV with the X1 voice remote. All xFi features are available at no extra cost to the more than 16 million Xfinity Internet customers who lease a compatible Xfinity router.