eSafety: Gaming devices

Children and young people love playing games. In fact, it is often through games that children first start to use technology. Games can provide a fun and social form of entertainment as well as having educational benefits and often encourage team work and cooperation when played with others.

Today's games consoles have in-built wireless so they can connect to your home internet or other wifi hotspots. This enables a wide range of online functions including playing with or against people online in multi-player games. According to Ofcom, nearly half of children aged 5-7 have a games console in their bedroom, rising to seven in ten 8-15 year olds.

Handheld Games: Some of the current popular handheld consoles are the Nintendo DSi, 3DS and the Sony PlayStation Portable (PSP). These devices can access the internet wirelessly, and allow for playing games with others online.

Consoles: These devices, like the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Nintendo Wii, are designed to work with a TV. Consoles like these are capable of connecting to the internet via a home internet connection just like other computers. This allows users to download games or 'expansions' to existing games as well as playing online, although a subscription may be required for this. All of the three main manufacturers include parental control functions in their consoles that are linked to age ratings systems.​