Microsoft readies family-oriented Xbox 360 features


In a move that'll surely brighten the day of gamer families, Microsoft has announced the "Xbox Live Family Pack," which will knock about half off four Xbox Live Gold memberships. The initiative is reportedly intended to solve the problem of households sharing a single console and Xbox Live account, and it will include various family-specific features to make life easier on parents.

Along with four Gold memberships for $99.99, Xbox 360s will have a Family Center that will funnel billing and account management through one primary account. That account has the ability to purchase and dispense Microsoft Points to other members, as well as access to activity monitoring reports to "help encourage discussions about safer more balanced gaming and entertainment habits."

Redmond also plans to offer "exclusive family content and discounts," and it'll take parental controls to the next step with talk of a function that removes all mature games, movies and content from the dashboard. Parents will also be able to apply title exceptions to disallow inappropriate material, and Microsoft will offer "intelligent default settings for child, teen, and adult profiles."

The new family features will roll out this November alongside Microsoft's new Kinect motion controller.

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