Google Play Store gets “teacher-approved” kid-friendly app content section

Google is making a long-overdue addition to the Play Store: a section where parents can find content for their children to download on their devices.

With many families forced to stay home because of the COVID-19 pandemic, parents have been looking to bridge the gap left behind by the early closure of schools and the uncertainty in coming weeks over the opening up of everything that had closed down.

While those with the means and access have resorted to class Zoom calls for their children and their classmates and teachers, others have gone the home-schooling way, taking advantage of various resources available either for free or at discounted rates to make them accessible to many.

Given how kids are getting tech-savvy at a very early age with most that have the access able to operate smartphones and tablets with relative ease, it makes sense to make it easy to access content, such as apps, that is appropriate to them, easily.

Previously, that has been hard. I have experienced it myself when setting up a device for a friend’s child.

According to Google, the kids section on the Play Store will feature apps that have been identified by teachers it has previously partnered with to review and rate apps on its platform. Such apps will bear a “Teacher approved” badge.

Google already allows anyone to easily set up devices for minors under their care with the Family Link programme since 2017. Starting last year with the release of Android 10, Google has also tightened parental controls on the Android platform to create a safe environment for minors by letting them review the apps their children install as well as set and monitor screen time for apps, something that Microsoft is also doing.

Google says that the “Teacher approved” apps will be rolling out internationally over the next few months. Until then, the Family section of the Play Store is worth a visit.

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