YouTube has launched a new, ad-free version of its YouTube Kids app – as long as you’re subscribed to YouTube Red.
The site’s dedicated app for kids was launched a while back, but soon met with controversy due to its adverts, as many kid-friendly streaming services do not include ads – although these, unlike YouTube, have alternative means of funding, be its IPlayer or Sky.
Last year, YouTube embraced a new income model: YouTube Red, a subscription service that allows users to watch YouTube with no adverts, and the ability to download and stream videos offline. Now, YouTube is rolling out that functionality across its standalone apps, including YouTube Kids. That means Red customers can get an ad-free version of YouTube Kids for their youngsters to use, as well as the ability to show them videos in car or train journeys over the summer holidays.
There are, however, a few snags. For starters, YouTube Red is currently only available in the US, Australia and New Zealand. And, of course, there’s the fact that many vloggers will sign deals with companies to produce sponsored content that are, effectively, adverts – although following Warner Bros.’ recent settlement surrounding its alleged non-disclosure of payments made to YouTube stars to promote a video game, sponsored content should be easier to spot in the future.
“Over the next few months we’ll be making some changes to the app that’ll give parents more choice on how to customize the content that appears or doesn’t appear in their YouTube Kids experience,” says A.J. Crane, Product Manager, which may well hint that parents will be able to filter out such videos for their kids.