As they say, to share is to be occupied. But when you’re leading a family, sharing really is the only way to stay sane and in control. In this highly digital and mobile age, family members amass tons of information and are bombarded with data themselves. Putting it all together in one place accessible to each family member is sometimes more work than it is worth. Fortunately, Google has introduced new sharing features to its apps and services, making YouTube TV, Google Calendar, Google Keep, and Google Photos a family and personal affair.
YouTube TV already costs $ 35 per month. Now imagine trying to give your family access to this nearly endless cloud-based DVR. Previously you only had two options. Get them their own subscription or have a joint account where the display of histories and preferences could and will conflict. As of today, however, you can invite up to five other family members, ages 13 and up, to the same YouTube TV account. Each user will have their own personal library and viewing history to keep their private preferences private.
Some things, however, are meant to be shared or known to everyone. This is especially true for things like calendars, checklists or shopping lists and family photos. As of today, you can also do them on Google services. Members of a family account, for example, will automatically see a new family calendar in Google Calendar, which anyone can see, edit, or add. Just make sure you don’t add your personal and secret appointments to it.
The same goes for Google Keep, even if you only share the notes one by one. A rather curious feature is that a note you shared with your family group can still be shared with other people outside the group and those outside people will be able to see that you have shared the note with your family. Sharing with family group in Google Photos works the same.
These new features put Google’s services at the center of your home and may be the precursor to even deeper integration with smart home systems, like its own Google Home. Family features are now available in Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Russia, Spain, UK and United States. Except for YouTube TV, the availability of which is still extremely limited even in the United States.