Earlier this year news came out that Google was looking at catering to a whole new market – kids under thirteen years old.
The Wall Street Journal reported at the time that the company was working on a new system that would let parents set up accounts for kids, and control how they use services and what info is collected about them.
The Journal’s source said it’s Google’s response to people who are already trying to sign their kids up for the company’s products. Apparently they want to make sure it’s handled right and lawfully.
The Information, which first reported on Google’s plans back in the summer, said Google would offer a dashboard for parents to oversee kids’ activities. This would be in addition to a kid-friendly version of YouTube.
We haven’t really heard more about any of this in quite a while until now. USA Today has a new report out after speaking with Pavni Diwanji, VP of engineering at Google, who is leading the initiative. The report quotes her:
“We expect this to be controversial, but the simple truth is kids already have the technology in schools and at home,” says the mother of two daughters, ages 8 and 13. “So the better approach is to simply see to it that the tech is used in a better way.”
“We want to be thoughtful about what we do, giving parents the right tools to oversee their kids’ use of our products,” says Diwanji, who will attend the White House ceremony. “We want kids to be safe, but ultimately it’s about helping them be more than just pure consumers of tech, but creators, too.”
These products are apparently due out next year, though the report doesn’t get into the specifics on which ones, other than to speculate about Search, Chrome, and YouTube.
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