As they say, sharing is caring. But when you’re running a family, sharing is really the only way to stay sane and keep on top of things. In this highly digital and mobile age, family members amass tons of information and are themselves bombarded with data. Corralling all these into one place accessible to each and every member of the family is sometimes more work than it’s worth. Thankfully, Google has introduced new sharing features to its apps and services, making YouTube TV, Google Calendar, Google Keep, and Google Photos a family affair as well as a personal one.
YouTube TV already costs $35 a month. Now imagine trying to give your family access to that near infinite cloud DVR. Previously, you only had two options. Either get them their own subscription or have one common account where viewing histories and preferences might and will clash. Starting today, however, you can invite up to 5 other family members, aged 13 and above, to the same single YouTube TV account. Each user will have his or her own personal library and viewing history to keep private preferences private.
Some things, however, are meant to be shared or known by all. That is especially true for things like calendars, checklists or shopping lists, and family photos. Starting today as well, you can do those on Google services too. Members of a family account, for example, will automatically see a new Family calendar in Google Calendar, which anyone can see, edit, or add to. Just be sure not to add your personal and secret appointments to it.
Same goes for Google Keep, though you only share notes one by one. A rather curious feature is that a note you have shared with your family group can still be shared with others not part of the group and those outsiders will be able to see that you’ve shared the note with your family. Sharing with the family group in Google Photos work the same way.
These new features put Google’s services right at the center of your home and is perhaps a precursor to an even deeper integration with smart home systems, like its own Google Home. The family features are available now in Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Russia, Spain, United Kingdom, and the United States. Except for YouTube TV, whose availability is still still extremely limited even in the US.