Last week I was invited to join YouTube at MILK Studios for an introductory lunch celebrating YouTube’s debut of YouTube Kids! The YouTube Kids app is designed with families in mind – an app designed from the ground up for kids. The app makes it safer and easier for children to find videos on topics they want to explore, and is available for free on Google Play and the App Store in the U.S.
My sister and I joined YouTube and other families to celebrate (and try out) the new app. My sister was so excited – we’re massive YouTube users (who isn’t?). Naturally, as a family with more than one blogger, media consumption is relatively high and for years safety on the internet has been a prominent topic of conversation for my family. So when I first found out about YouTube kids I was so glad – finally, a space that’s safe but not exclusionary! It means that your kids still have access to excellent YouTube content minus the content inappropriate for their age!
Between YouTube Cakepops and other treats, I was shown how the YouTube Kids app allows you to even set time limits on the app – and how the app notifies the user that the time allowance is running down by playing soft bedtime music. Pretty darn cool!
Here’s a quick rundown of the YouTube Kids parental controls:
We realize every family is different, so we’ve built options into the app that help you control the experience for your kids:
Timer: Let the app be the bad guy with a built-in timer that lets you limit kids’ screen time. The app alerts your child when the session is over, so you don’t have to. (You’re welcome. )
Sound settings: Sometimes you need a little peace and quiet! You have an option to turn off background music and sound effects, so your kids can keep watching while you catch a breather.
Search settings: If you’d rather limit your children to just the pre-selected videos available on the home screen, you can turn off search.
Product feedback: Our goal is to improve YouTube Kids all the time, so we’ve included a space for you to give us your feedback.
We had such a great time, we loved seeing Elmo & Cookie Monster (I don’t care how old you get – Elmo & Cookie Monster are the icons of childhood!), and it was so lovely of YouTube to have us!