Nintendo Switch Parental Controls™ is a free app for smart devices to keep you engaged with your family's gaming activities on Nintendo Switch.
◆ A Nintendo Switch console with the latest available system version is required to use this app.
This is recommended for people worried about things such as:
1. Is my child spending too much time playing games?
2. What kind of games is my child playing?
3. Are the games my child is playing age-appropriate?
Below are three special features of the Nintendo Switch Parental Controls app:
1. Monitor play time on your console.
Set a play-time limit and the console will notify users that the time limit has been reached.
Parents and guardians can check the Nintendo Switch Parental Controls app to see if the time limit has been followed.
It is also possible to suspend gameplay automatically when the play-time limit is reached.
2. Check up on your console's gameplay.
The summary function allows you to easily see what games have been played on the console recently and how much time was spent playing each day.
View daily reports and monthly summaries of play activity. If you choose to receive push notifications, you'll be notified when a new monthly summary is available.
It's an easy way to see what kind of games your family is interested in.
3. Restrict console features.
Nintendo Switch functions can be restricted to prevent the console from playing games above a certain age rating.
◆ An Internet connection is required to use this app. Cellular data may be used. A Nintendo Account (for ages 18 and up) is also required.
◆ Restrictions to Nintendo eShop purchases can be set from Nintendo Account settings.
◆ Your use of this app is subject to the Nintendo Account User Agreement available at support.nintendo.com.
◆ In order to make use of all of the features and settings available in the Nintendo Switch Parental Controls app, all registered Nintendo Switch consoles need to be using the latest system version.
Feature improvements and bug fixes have been implemented.
Ratings and Reviews
Much too slow to sync
This is an issue I haven’t seen highlighted in other negative reviews, so maybe it’s not a widespread problem, but the app does not sync with the console in anything close to real time, even though the console is connected to wi fi. I had expected that I would get a notification at the time my son exceeds the limit but I typically don’t find out how much time he went over until later in the day. He has no problem blowing through the alarm and playing another half hour while I’m not even aware of it. I don’t want to turn on the “suspend” option that automatically shuts off the console because it’s always better to handle these things gently with him, but the app doesn’t really give me the tools to do that.
Plus, like everyone has noted, no individual user limits, no “time of day” settings. It would also be nice to be able to adjust an individual day’s time setting without editing that day if the week permanently (for example, if he goes over by 30 minutes on Saturday, I’d like to deduct that from the Sunday limit for that week without having to go change it back again the next week).
I gave it 2 stars because it is better than nothing, but barely better than nothing.
Great idea, horribly implemented
I was super excited to learn that the Switch had parental controls. Unfortunately the options are severely lacking, rendering useless the parental control feature. As others have mentioned, the inability to set parental controls (time limits, content ratings) for individual users is a complete non-starter. My next thought was to set a combined time limit for the whole family, and then use the app to monitor whether family members were self-managing and splitting the time equitably. This too is not possible, as the app’s accounting of time per user is wildly inaccurate. Lastly, it would be nice if two instances of the app could be linked to the same Switch console (e.g. both mine and my wife’s iPhones) for co-parent monitoring.
Assuming Nintendo fixes all of the above, this app could actually fulfill its assumed promise. From there it would be amazing to also be able to set parental controls for my kids’ Nintendo 3DS consoles using this same app. Even cooler would be if screen time limits per kid were enforced cross-device, which would allow parents to mange total daily screen time regardless of which Nintendo device their kids are using. After all, what’s the purpose of making parents establish Nintendo accounts and IDs for each kid if not to ultimately provide features like this? Or is it just so Nintendo can track, profile, and sell stuff to my kids? Disappointing.
Parents need more and better partnership
During COVID, playing with friends has become both an important outlet and a concerning pattern and need for my 12 year old boy. Among other things when it comes to helping him be balanced with gaming and school and physical activity and etc, I would like more control over setting a time window with start AND end times that stick. And somehow my kid seems to play through the limits consistently when on Fortnite.
Honestly it makes me want to get rid of the Switch to get rid of that stress and conflict in my life because the way controls are designed now he feels like I am an enemy, doing something to him. It would be way better if there were a way for him to participate in a healthy way. I do appreciate that the controls exist at all but feel like it’s an MVP. I find myself wondering …how might the super smart Nintendo designers enhance what exists and create a kid-facing approach to help them be a part of learning to self-manage and monitor? Pediatricians and child development experts are clear that 2 hrs of screen time is a MAX for healthy well-rounded children, across all platforms. Let’s all work together to make that more viable? Thanks for asking.
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- Nintendo Co., Ltd.
- 98.3 MB
- Requires iOS 9.0 or later.
- Requires iPadOS 9.0 or later.
- iPod touch
- Requires iOS 9.0 or later.
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- Age Rating
- 17+ Unrestricted Web Access
- © 2017 Nintendo Co., Ltd.