Google planning kid-friendly versions of YouTube, Chrome and more


WhistleOut
04 December 2014

Google has confirmed that it is working on kid-safe versions of some of its most popular products, including YouTube, Chrome and the Google search engine.

Speaking with USA Today, Google VP of Engineering Pavni Diwanji discussed the upcoming child-safe alternatives, which will be aimed at kids aged 12 and younger and are rumoured to be released late next year.

With so many Google employees having children of their own, executives at the company have become motivated to create online services that are safe and fun for kids to use. And unsurprisingly, Diwanji says that encouraging children to become both consumers and creators of tech is high on Google’s agenda.

Diwanji expects the products may drum up controversy, but argues that when children are already accessing technology at home and in schools on a daily basis, it makes sense to come up with a version catered specifically to the under-12 market.

Won't somebody think of the children?

While there’s plenty of options out there for anxious parents, such as parental filters and devices specially designed for children, a completely kid-friendly search engine and YouTube option is likely to be more effective than simply switching on SafeSearch.

What may spark debate is the idea of Google treating children as another means to collect data and revenue. The company will need to comply with the strict regulations set in place by the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (US), which aims to prevent companies from collecting info on minors without ‘verifiable’ parental consent.

At this stage, it’s unclear whether the products will simply control the types of media and information children can access, or offer a completely child-focused overhaul of Google services. Diwanji says there are plans to include parental supervision options, but ultimately it’s up to individual parents to decide the level of control they have over their children’s online activities.

Image credit: Mr. Thinktank at Flickr


Comments

WhistleOut
  Heart

Find Better Phones and Tariffs

Hundreds of mobile phone tariffs unpacked. All the facts. No surprises.

Search 7 Networks

Compare phones and tariffs from the following carriers...

Featured Deals

iPhone X - compare plans and prices

Compare plans & prices for the new iPhone X including any special promotions being offered

Samsung Galaxy S9 - compare plans and prices

Check out plans and prices for the Samsung Galaxy S9 range here including any special promotions being offered.

Three's Special Offer

Get 12 months subscription to Netflix when you sign up to an eligible Samsung device on selected 24 months plans.

4GEE SIM Plans

Check out EE's best SIM Only deals, 25GB for £25 and 40GB for £30, for limited time only...