Google's Read-Along App
Source/ Insider

The best news we heard today was how Google had become a star with introducing their Read-Along Android App. This is perfect for children sitting at home during COVID-19 since it’ll help them learn.

What is Google’s Read-Along App?

Google’s Read-Along Android app helps teach reading skills to elementary school students, is now available in early access in 180 countries, the firm announced today. Read-Along uses Google’s text-to-speech, and speech recognition technology to provide feedback as kids work through the app’s reading prompts and games.

The app supports nine languages, including English, Spanish, Portuguese, and Hindi. Read-Along first launched as an app called Bolo in India in March 2019.

Kids are guided through Reading-Along with the help of an “in-app reading buddy” named Diya. “She gives the kids positive and reinforcing feedback along the way, just as a parent or teacher would,” according to Google. “Children can also tap Diya at any time for help pronouncing a word or a sentence.”

Have a look at how the Read-Along App looks like

Google's Read-Along App

Why does the app seem promising?

As children progress in the app, they’re presented with mini word games and earn in-app prizes as they improve their skills.

Google says the app was built with children’s privacy in mind and can work without either Wi-Fi or data. The voice data is analyzed in real-time on the device and is not synced, stored, or analyzed on Google’s servers. The company also stresses that it’s not using a voice sample from the kids to make the product better.

The app doesn’t include advertising or in-app purchases, either. Parents can opt to connect to the internet if they want to download new stories, but there isn’t a charge.

Here’s another image of how the app looks like:

Google Read-Along App

Read-Along offers around 500 stories, and the catalog is continually expanded with new books.

Since its debut as Bolo in March 2019, Google says feedback from parents was encouraging, prompting it to bring the app to new markets. While in India, “Bolo” is broadly understood to mean “speak,” Google rebranded the app to Read Along to resonate with parents and children around the world. The app has also been updated with an enhanced library, new games, and other user interface improvements since launch.

The new Read-Along app is now globally available, except in the Philippines, Colombia, and Denmark and offers stories in English, Spanish, Portuguese, Hindi, Marathi, Bengali, Tamil, Telugu, and Urdu.

The app is a free download on Google Play for children ages five and up.

What do you think of this app? Let us know in the comments below.

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