This morning, the world’s largest and best-known video sharing service, YouTube, rolled out an update to its YouTube Kids app, thereby making it fully compatible with Chromecast. The update will allow users to stream videos from the YouTube Kids app on to large-screen televisions at home, should children (or their parents) so desire. The regular YouTube app of course, have had full Chromecast support for a while now. Another change as part of the same update, allows parents and / or guardians to gain even more control of what their wards get to do with the app, by setting a password to access parental controls so that older (and presumably smarter) kids do not get to change the settings as fixed by their guardians. The password will be applicable to all controls accessible from within the app itself, as well as the global settings menu.
YouTube launched its dedicated Android and iOS mobile apps for kids back in February this year. The Google-owned website has undergone many changes over the years, but it took the company fairly long to introduce this dedicated child-friendly version of the service, amidst rising complaints from parents that the video sharing service was becoming an increasingly unsafe place for children. Google introduced parental controls with the YouTube Kids app which allows parents to have a significant control over what their kids get to do with the app. That includes setting the time for how long their children can watch videos on YouTube, among other features that allows the app itself to be the bad guy and tell kids go to bed or get back to studies etc. by cutting off the streaming videos. All this of course, according to the already customized parental control settings. The new update will just make those settings secured through the use of a password, to prevent kids from changing the settings as laid down by their parents.
It will be interesting to see how parents of young children react to the new changes, but most people with slightly older and inquisitive kids would probably appreciate the new features as it means no more worrying about whether your kid has found a way of bypassing the security settings as fixed by you. The Chromecast support meanwhile, elevates YouTube Kids from something that can only be enjoyed by individuals on tiny little tablet or smartphone screens, to something that can be enjoyed by the entire family together on large TV screens in the family room.