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article imageGoogle unveils YouTube for Kids, available now on Android and iOS

By James Walker     Feb 23, 2015 in Technology
Google has unveiled its long-anticipated YouTube for Kids app that promises to give parents control over what video content their children consume and the ability to limit viewing hours while creating an attractive interface for kids.
The app is described as "the first Google product built from the ground up with little ones in mind" and can be downloaded now on Apple's App Store or Google Play. It has a "bright and playful design" that is intended to make it easy for children to find content without having to spell out words and search.
Large images, intuitive icons and strong colours are emphasised so that the navigation controls are immediately visible. Voice search is also available, making it accessible to even the youngest children who cannot spell or type.
Channels and playlists are categorised and cherry-picked into four categories: Shows, Music, Learning and Explore. These are curated to ensure that only truly family-friendly content is included and currently include films from DreamWorks TV, educational series from National Geographic Kids and firm favourites such as Thomas the Tank Engine.
Parental controls are designed to be simple and easy for parents to set up. A timer function makes it easy to limit the viewing duration and screen time of your children. The app automatically alerts the child user when their allotted session is over.
Background music and sound effects can be turned off to allow for a quieter time in the house. A particularly powerful option is the ability to completely disable search, preventing children from finding material that may be unsuitable for their age. If this is enabled, only the curated content options presented on the homescreen will be available to use.
Google says the app is "the first step toward reimagining YouTube for families" and intends to continue development to improve the experience with requested features. It is already easy for parents to contribute feedback directly from within the app. It will be made available on the Kurio and Nabi kids tablets in the near future too alongside Google Play and iOS.
More about Google, YouTube, Kids, App, Android
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