Whether you’re #TeamTablet or all about limiting screen time, the use of technology in little hands can be a life-saving boredom buster, enriching and fun—if you’re not having to manage your little one’s every move. Enter Google Kids Space: a new kids mode with content to help kids discover, create, and grow—on tablets at an unarguably incredible price point. Read on to learn more about Google Kids Space and how our editor’s kids used this new tablet experience!

Designed With Kids’ Curiosity In Mind

If you do a Google search for tablets, you'll find a lot of options. What’s hard to find: Tablets designed specifically for kids, with expertly curated content and a straightforward design that kids as young as three can understand. That's where Google Kids Space comes in! To create a one-of-a-kind tablet experience that encourages kids' curiosity, Google teamed up with children’s education and media specialists, teachers and other experts to handpick games and books. The kids mode also recommends videos that spark creativity and play. Paired with the easy-to-use parental controls from Google Family Link, it's a win-win for families. 

photo: S. Massey

Curated Content

When setting up Google Kids Space on your child's tablet profile, your child has the opportunity to select areas of interest, such as sports, cooking, animals, science and more. On their home screen, they'll find content suggestions based on their selected interests. They can easily navigate among the homepage (with new recommendations every day), "Play" (teacher-approved apps and games that are age-appropriate), "Read" (handpicked books), "Watch" (videos from YouTube Kids), and "Make" (videos that encourage offline play). Parental controls that you've set up for your child's Google account managed with Family Link are applied to the curated content that your child might select. Bonus: If your kids are sharing a tablet, each child can have their own profile so they'll be able to customize their own interests! Google Kids Space is best suited for kids aged 3 to 8.

photo: iStock

Smart & Easy Parental Controls

More independence for them with less worry for you: Google Family Link helps parents manage their child’s device. Parents can download the free Family Link app on compatible Android, iOS, and Chrome OS devices. Family Link helps parents do things like allowing or blocking apps on a child's device or setting time limits—all from their own phone. The best news: Since you control the settings through your child's Google account on this tablet, you'll be setting the guardrails for any time your child logs into his or her Google account.

Bottom line: Google Kids Space and Family Link transform tablets into multi-functional, super practical and easy-to-use devices.

photo: S. Massey

Our Experience

In a household with four children ranging in age from 3 to 12, Google Kids Space was a hit with everyone. Since we could easily set up a custom profile for each kid, everyone got to enjoy the tablet and was able to find fun content that fit their age and interests. Once we had her profile set up—which only takes a few minutes—our littlest one was able to navigate between Sesame Street and Peppa Pig videos with only a minimal amount of frustration! When the tablet is open to her account, the home screen has suggestions picked for her, which means she spent more time actually using apps instead of asking us to help her pick a game (and another game after she changes her mind and another after that).

Even though our three year old and 7 year old were using the tablet, which would usually get some resistance about it being a toy for little kids, we got zero complaints about having the same device! When our son was in his profile, he was able to set his interests for vehicles and animals instead of princesses—giving him a very different experience than his sister—and the apps like Code Karts and home screen features like interesting animal facts let him feel like the tablet is for big kids. We had two tablets, but, with different profiles, we could easily take just one with us for traveling! 

Google Kids Space is compatible on select tablets. Learn about compatible tablets here.

—Shelley Massey

* Google Kids Space requires a Google Account for your child. Parental controls require the Family Link app on a supported Android, Chromebook, or iOS device. Books and video content not available in all regions. Video content subject to availability of YouTube Kids app. Books content requires the Play Books app. Availability of apps, books, and video content may change without notice. Google Assistant not available in Google Kids Space.