Following the recent introduction of parent-controlled watchlists in google tv and renewal of your Family Link parental control app, Google announced today that it is now also bringing parental controls to its platform Google Assistant.
New features will be released in the coming weeks at Google Homeas well as in the Family Link and Google Assistant apps on iOS Y Androidand will allow parents to limit or even completely disable certain Assistant features, configure kid-friendly settings, adjust sleep time, and more.
Additionally, the settings will allow parents to set default services, restrict children from making calls, and limit the type of responses they can get from Assistant. The update will also introduce new features for children and new voices.
With new Assistant features, parents will be able to select which music and video providers their child has access to, including YouTube Kids, Youtube Y Youtube music. This prevents them from being able to browse content from other services.
With parental controls, parents and guardians can specify what features their child can access through the Assistant, like whether they can make phone calls on smart speakers, whether they can use Google Actions, what kind of responses they get (basic or all, this latest that could contain mature content), whether they can play music or videos, whether videos are filtered, and more. Parents can also choose to disable access to news and podcast in the devices of their children if they prefer.
An option for children to understand better and more news
A new function called dictionary for children, in order to offer the option for the Google Assistant to provide more age-appropriate responses.
When the Assistant detects through voice matching that a child is asking a question, it can switch to the Kids Dictionary to respond with easy-to-understand definitions that are better suited to younger people. This will work on smart speakers, smart displays, mobile devices Y google notes.
Also, Google Assistant will get four new voices friendly to children who speak a little slower and in a more expressive style, designed to enhance the Assistant’s storytelling abilities and aid in comprehension.
New Assistant features can be changed in supported apps or with voice commands, such as “Hey Google, open Assistant settings” or “Hey Google, change your voice.” More will be available in the coming weeks.
To complement Google’s existing screen time controls for other devices, parents will also be able to set hours of inactivity for the Assistant. That way, kids couldn’t stay up past bedtime asking the Assistant questions or playing music or games, for example.
Google cares about the privacy of parents and children
The changes are part of a broader set of reactions among tech giants in the face of increasing scrutiny from regulators and lawmakers over how children use their tech products, how they do or do not protect children’s privacy, what kind of data is collected, and how they are used
In light of these developments, Google last year introduced increased protections for minors on its platforms, including Search, Youtube and other applications.
More recently, however, Google has focused on empowering parents to adjust specific settings in certain Google services to offer more protections tailored to their own family’s needs.
This month, for example, the company redesigned its main parental control app, FamilyLink, which now allows parents to set alerts and make ad hoc adjustments to screen time without changing their normal schedule, among other things.
The company also introduced new parent-controlled watchlists on its television platform, Google TV, as well as suggestions from artificial intelligence for children.