Google has launched an ad-free, free-to-play social network for kids and teens.
The social network lets kids and young people from around the world discover, chat and share with each other with an ad free, ad-supported model.
It launched a free version on Google Play on Monday and plans to roll out more in the future, including a paid subscription.
It’s the latest move by Google in a bid to lure away kids and millennials, who have become the target of ad campaigns.
Google has long been seen as a leader in social, with apps like YouTube and Google Plus offering video-sharing, music and games.
The Google+ Kids app launched last year, and the company said last year that more than 500 million people had signed up for it, and about 200 million people used the service to discover friends.
Google also announced plans last year to launch a free app for parents that let parents keep track of their children’s activities, while giving parents access to their childrens’ private information.
The company says its ad-Free Kids app will let parents choose to use the app or not, and let parents control whether or not their children use the service.
“This app is designed for parents who want to control what happens with their children when they go to play with their friends,” the company says.
It also said that the app will provide access to private messages and photos, and “notify parents of the most recent activity on their children.”
While Google+ is an interesting approach for children, there are many issues with it, according to Mark Cockerham, CEO of ad tech company AdSense.
“Kids today are increasingly looking for new social networks and apps because of all the social media platforms that they see as being less important than traditional media and apps,” he told the Financial Review.
“The social networks of yesteryear have been a huge part of our culture, but that’s changing and now kids are looking for more and more alternatives.”
Google has also introduced its own advertising service called AdSense Plus, which allows companies to create customised ads for specific audiences, and offer them to parents.
“AdSense Plus allows companies who want their ads to be shown to a specific audience to easily set up custom ads for that audience, and we are seeing many companies doing this,” Mr Cockerheim said.
“We are now seeing a number of companies starting to put their ads in the app and using AdSensePlus to create adverts for kids, for example for the first time parents can now use the ad-based feature of AdSense to sell their own apps to their kids.”
Mr Cockerholm said that Google Plus was “the best way to get kids interested in apps” as there was no other way to make money from kids.