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(Pocket-lint) - Microsoft is updating its Edge browser with a Kids Mode. Described as a "convenient browsing mode", it is designed with child-friendly features in mind and is meant to make browsing the web safer for little ones. Here's how to access and use it.

What is Microsoft Edge's Kids Mode?

Kids Mode is a child-friendly browsing mode in the Edge browser. It features custom browser themes, restricts content so that it's age-appropriate, limits browsing based on an allow list, sets Bing SafeSearch to strict, and requires a password to exit. The best part is Kids Mode doesn't require a child account or profile, which means you can easily enable it from the Profile picker in Edge.

Who can try Kids Mode in Microsoft Edge?

  • Go here to learn how to become an Edge Insider

The feature is not widely available as of February 2021. It’s initially being rolled out to Edge Insiders - or beta testers - who are part of Microsoft’s Canary test channel, with the feature coming to the dev channel sometime after. Eventually, it will launch for all Edge users.

How to enable and use Kids Mode

Start Kids Mode

Currently, Kids Mode is limited to US English on Windows and MacOS.

  1. Open the latest version of Microsoft Edge on your computer.
  2. Open the profile switcher in the browser frame and select Browse in Kids Mode.
    • You don't have to be signed into the browser.
    • Signing in will allow the Kids Mode settings to sync across your devices.
  3. First time launching Kids Mode? You'll see an explanation of the feature.
  4. Choose the appropriate age range to launch Kids Mode in.
  5. A new window for Kids Mode will open in full screen.
    • Your previous browsing window will be saved and closed.
  6. Until you exit Kids Mode, Microsoft Edge will always launch in Kids Mode.

Note: You can always change your age selection in edge://settings/family.

Exit Kids Mode

You need your computer password (the same password used to unlock your computer) to exit Kids Mode and resume browsing.

  1. Select the Kids Mode icon at the top of the browser.
  2. Select Exit Kids Mode Window.
  3. Enter your credentials.
    • If you close the window, Edge will ask for your device credentials.

Choose a theme inside Kids Mode

Kids can choose their own themes inside Kids Mode.

  1. Select Choose background and colours.
  2. Choose a theme and select Done.

Block or grant sites in Kids Mode

With Kids Mode, a child visits a website not on the allow list, they'll encounter a block page. You can only make changes to the allow list when you're outside of the Kids Mode and only from the profile that launches Kids Mode.

  1. Go to Settings and More > Settings > Family.
  2. Select Manage allowed sites in Kids Mode.
    • You’ll see the pre-defined allow list.
  3. To remove a site, click on the Close icon next to it in the list.
  4. To add a site, select Add website.

Note: While in Kids Mode, to visit the website during the browsing session, select Get permission. The owner of the device will need to enter the device credentials. Once that happens, the block page will refresh and the page will be allowed for the current browsing session.

Want to know more?

Check out Microsoft's support page on Kids Mode.

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Writing by Maggie Tillman. Originally published on 16 February 2021.