The last two updates Google introduced to YouTube Kids were all about making the app more secure for users. However, more emphasis emphases were placed on parental controls among several others. In the latest update announced late on Thursday, Google is once again giving parents more controls—this time it is all about the types of videos kids can see on the platform.
The update, according to Google, is geared towards improving user experience for millions of children and parents who watch their favorite videos on the platform.
The latest update comes with a single settings change where parents can click “approved content only” on a child’s profile. This is aimed at making sure that parents only watch content that they [parents] have manually selected.
The update will also allow parents to add playlists curated by trusted partners which include PBS Kids, Sesame Street, and even more. With the “approved content,” now added, the app’s search feature has now been disabled by YouTube.
For kids between 8-12, YouTube is adding new content to take care of that age range. Parents who think their kids are ready to watch “Older” version of popular videos and gaming videos, then they have the option to update an existing profile or set up a new profile.
“Parents can change between “Younger,” “Older” and parent-approved content at any time. We’ve started to roll out the new older experience in the U.S. with plans to expand globally,” YouTube said in a blog post.
Last year, Google acted on various feedback it got from parents to add some needed controls over the kind of content their children get access to. The company gave parents power to block or flag off any content that they are uncomfortable with.
Google all along has been working with parents to improve the app and make it safe for all kids. In 2016, YouTube Kids Senior Software Engineer Balaji Srinivasan said the company was getting feedback from parents on how to make the app safe.
“Along the way, we’ve also received helpful feedback from parents on how we can make the app even better. Parents have told us they want more control over how their kids watch content in the YouTube Kids app. Today, we’re rolling out a new feature that continues to put parents in the driver’s seat so they can decide what content is right for their family,” YouTube Kids Senior Software Engineer Balaji Srinivasan said in a blog post
Srinivasan gave an example of the type of video a parent my feel uncomfortable about: “Let’s say you don’t want your little one watching a DIY video that shows them how to make gooey slime, or maybe you want them to take a break from watching certain sing-a-long videos. Well, now you can block videos or channels from their experience by signing into the app,” he said at the time.