Google have announced the release date of a new version of YouTube made especially for children.
On February 23, the company will roll out a new Android app called YouTube Kids.
Featuring a simplified interface and filtered content, the app will block inappropriate content while showcasing a selection of YouTube channels making content exclusively for children.
The app, which has been rumored to have been in development for almost a year, solves a big problem parents have had with YouTube for a long time. Online video is quickly becoming the new TV; however, there are no watersheds or ratings on YouTube and the most sordid content on the platform may just be a single click away from children’s content.
YouTube has always featured videos for children, such as Shaybeard on Maker Studio’s Cartoonium channel (below). However; until now, YouTube could not guarantee that an inappropriate video or ad would not appear next to the content.
The app solves that problem, while also providing advanced parental controls to. For example, parents can set a daily time limit for the app, after which it automatically locks and requires a password to reactivate.
The featured content at launch will focus on educational content from the likes of The Jim Henson Company, who are uploading full episodes of a selection of their old television series’ like “Sid the Science Kid” and “Fraggle Rock.” LeVar Burton’s “Reading Rainbow” has also produced a series specifically for the app called “uTech,” which teaches children about technology.
Videos by the Vlogbrothers Hank & John Green and popular minecraft gamer Stampylonghead will also be among those available on the app at launch while a curated list of videos from the wider YouTube community will also become available in the near future.
The app will only be available on Android devices at launch. However, while no specific mention was made in the report, an iOS app is expected to follow in the near future.