YouTube to Launch Child-Friendly App for Android Devices
Netflix has offered a child-friendly interface for years, and now YouTube is following suit. On Monday, YouTube will launch YouTube Kids, and app that makes finding appropriate videos easy for young viewers while keeping them away from more adult fare. Not surprisingly, since YouTube is owned by Google, the app will launch on Android first. YouTube didn't announce when an iOS version will be available.
YouTube Kids offers a large-button interface with greatly simplified options. Eight large images let kids tap for popular series. A row of five large icons sits above that, where kids can tap a TV set to see TV programs or a light bulb to see learning videos. A binoculars icon calls up a variety of popular videos. The search tool works with voice input, and instructs kids to try something else if they enter a term that would lead to adult content.
Parents will be able to use the app to limit how much video time their kids get. Parents can sign in with a password and set a daily timer.
According to USA Today, the app has been in the works for months, and was created with assistance from in-house engineers who are parents, as well as third-party testers and organizations like Common Sense Media.
Video gamers can immediately take advantage of the new offering, as well as updated video game streaming software.
Members who sign up in the first three days will get 12 months of premium service for free; after that $2.99 per month.
Watching the NCAA tournament's 67 games live online, however, will require cable or satellite authentication.
While the experience is currently being fine-tuned, a subscription plan is in the works and will launch in the next few months.
Any voice can find an audience on YouTube as long as viewers believe it's authentic and honest about what it wants to communicate.
Overcoming obstacles that prevented it from making the switch previously, YouTube says HTML5 video is now ready for the spotlight.