YouTube Kids launched in Singapore: What are the features?

YouTube Kids is a children-friendly version of the popular video-sharing platform YouTube.

Picture for representation
Picture for representation Reuters

YouTube Kids app was launched in Singapore on 12 November to provide family-friendly and learning videos to children aged two to eight years.

YouTube Kids is a children-friendly version of the popular video-sharing platform YouTube and it was first launched in the United States in February 2015.

With the app, children can search videos divided into four categories: Shows, Music, Learning and Explore. The app also provides parents with a strict control of what kind of videos and for how long the kids are watching. The app comes with a parental control that allows parents to restrict the videos their children can watch by turning off the search option or by setting a password. Moreover, they can also limit the time for which their kids will be looking at the screen with a built-in timer.

"YouTube Kids gives parents more control to provide a safer and more customised experience for their families to explore their endless curiosities, learn about new topics and be entertained," said Mr Don Anderson, head of Kids and Learning Partnership at YouTube Asia Pacific, as reported by The Straits Times.

The app retains some old features from the original YouTube. The new app comes with a recommendation list but lacks the "Like" option, comment section or number of views. Moreover, YouTube Kids is much more colourful with larger images and bold icons.

Another interesting feature that is introduced is the voice search. This option, creators argue, will allow children who cannot spell or type to search for videos.

The app is already popular in 25 other countries including Singapore, and has garnered more than 10 billion views in a year. It can be downloaded for free on Google Play and the App Store for smartphones.

"It is a safe platform for parents and kids to come together to create new content, to share content, share experiences," said Minister for Communications and Information Yaacob Ibrahim, who attended the launch at Google Asia Pacific's new office at Mapletree Business City, according to the news agency.