New Kids apps make YouTube safe for little ones

YouTube Kids on an Android tablet. Photo: Google

YouTube Kids on an Android tablet. Photo: Google

YouTube Kids, the brand new app designed to make YouTube a safer and more enjoyable place for our little ones, is now available on Android and iOS.

In addition to a selection of curated videos ideal for young viewers, the apps make it easier for kids to find and navigate their way around suitable content, and they block out anything that’s not fit for small eyes.

In a post on its blog, YouTube says this is the “the first Google product built from the ground up with little ones in mind,” and it hopes to make the YouTube experience better for both children and their parents.

Its bright and bold user interface, which presents a variety of channels and playlists in large tiles right on the home screen, makes it easier for kids to quickly find content they’ll be interested in. There are channels for favorite likes DreamWorks TV and National Geographic kids, as well as categories for things like Music, Learning, and Shows.

For parents, YouTube Kids provides a timer that allows us to limit how long our little ones can watch videos for, the option to disable sound effects, and an ability to restrict the search function so that they can only watch videos that appear on the home screen.

Even if you do leave the search function active, however, YouTube Kids will automatically block inappropriate content.

As a father of three girls who love watching YouTube on their iPads, YouTube Kids couldn’t be more welcome. We’re constantly worrying about what our kids might stumble across while they’re browsing around, and it’s impossible to control what appears inside the regular app.

YouTube Kids was expected to be an Android exclusive initially, but you’ll find it in the App Store as well for iPhone and iPad. For now, however, it’s only available to users in the U.S.