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Posted on October 29th, 2012 by Jonathan Bray

Windows Phone 8 Kid’s Corner: hands-on video

Microsoft might not have announced anything groundbreaking at its grand unveiling of Windows Phone 8, but that’s not to say we were completely underwhelmed. Indeed, for anyone who has children, the official confirmation of the new Kid’s Corner feature will come as a breath of fresh air.

And while the demo involving Windows Phone manager Joe Belfiore’s own children appearing on stage was undeniably cheesy, it will have struck a chord with smartphone-owning parents across the world. It certainly did with me, for whom the wheedling question “can I play a game on your phone, daddy?” has become a tiresomely regular refrain of late.

You can see a short demo of the feature in the short video at the top of this blog post, but the idea is really good. Set up involves ticking a few boxes in the Kid’s Corner settings, applying a lock so your kids don’t unlock the main phone and send your boss a text by accident, or purchase a small fortune’s worth of apps and music.

Then all your little devils need to do to get to their protected area is swipe a finger from right to left on the lock screen, and up pops a bright, kiddy-friendly interface, complete with live-tile-equipped home screen, but with only access to the apps you specified earlier.

There’s just one potential pitfall: it’s all lovely and safe and cuddly, but giving the kids their own “phone within a phone”, as Belfiore put it, seems likely to give even them an over-inflated sense of ownership over your pride and joy, making it more difficult than ever to prise their sticky fingers from it when you need it most.

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10 Responses to “ Windows Phone 8 Kid’s Corner: hands-on video ”

  1. aras Says:
    October 30th, 2012 at 9:13 am

    Seems like genuinely useful feature. Would have prevented these calls from my 3 year old to company’s CEO…

  2. Richard Says:
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:01 am

    I am pleased that my children are well past the age of using my telephone as a plaything. Mind you, apart from a calculator, which I can never find and a few other equally stimulating examples, there are few if any games on it anyway.
    I am also uncomfortable with the idea that, ‘what the parents have is also the child’s’. Does no one still use the word ‘no’?
    If I have my handset with me it is to make, or more likely receive, probably an urgent call about an ill relation, (I have several!). I do not get many such calls but there are certainly schedule changing when they come.
    Games are so low on my list of wants that they do not make the bottom of my top 1000 needs.

  3. Confucious Says:
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:04 am

    Windows8 is good for kids – pity it’s not aimed at adults.

  4. nickallison Says:
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:26 am

    Not aimed at adults?
    And how is it any less so than IOS? Or android.
    If stupid comments (and pseudonyms) are your thing, you’ll fit right in.

  5. Grunthos Says:
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:32 am

    It’s a really clever feature, I’ve yet to find a single child who doesn’t want to play on their parents phone.

    This takes away the worry of what they might accidently do.

  6. Grunthos Says:
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:36 am

    @nickallison Don’t worry, I think Confucious is one of those people who want’s their OSes (whether phone or PC) to be complicated so that they can seem clever when they use them.

    @Confuious Perhaps you’d like a phone with a command prompt so you can really show off? ;)

  7. Confucious Says:
    October 30th, 2012 at 11:57 am

    Windows 8 might work fine on phones or even tablets, but my point was, on a PC thos big rectangles just make it look childish and make the whole thing more difficult to use.
    On a phone it is OK but on t he desktop it is a joke.

  8. nickallison Says:
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:40 pm

    Well that’s a more rounded opinion. Thankyou.
    But I would like to point out that this feature is actually on the “OK” windows phone 8 OS. Not the desktop.
    Do I have to start a debate on the merits or otherwise of Metro on the desktop, that can be turned off if you really can’t abide having all your info there at your fingertips without having to launch anything.

  9. Andy Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 8:32 am

    Wow, Nick, you’re really angry aren’t you? Microsoft should pay you more.

  10. nickallison Says:
    November 1st, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    If Microsoft want to send me a cheque for services rendered, I am not going to refuse it. But I doubt one will be forthcoming.
    Meanwhile I shall keep banging on about what is IMO the best of the mobile OSes and defending it from ill-informed commentary. And I will not stop until the nay-Sayers do.


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