Google Arts & Culture

Google, Inc.

Parental Discretion Advised

Zift Advisory

This App Contains...
Chat
Commenting
Live Streaming
Videos can be shared
Location Tracking
Geotracking
Photo Sharing
Photo sending/receiving
Stranger Danger
Interacting with strangers
Mature Content
Adult Content/Themes

Parent Rating

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The Google Arts and Culture app brings exhibits from across the globe to mobile devices.  The app is a fun and interactive way to explore museums and exhibits across the world from virtually anywhere with a mobile device, and can also serve as a guide when visiting museums. It suitable for teens ages 12 years and older.

About Google Arts & Culture

What is Google Arts & Culture?

The Google Arts and Culture app is the fruit of a collaboration between Google and over 1,200 museum, galleries and institutions, bringing exhibits from across the globe to mobile devices. The app feature bringing users in droves is the use of facial recognition technology, which matches user selfies with classical artwork pieces.

 

An offhand comment by Google, “By the way, Google doesn’t use your selfie for anything else and only keeps it for the time it takes to search for mates,” makes light of the fact that there are many skeptics of what Google is doing with the millions of faces being scanned in with the app.

 

The Google Arts & Culture team created this app for a very specific purpose - to discover works of art. They state:

"The Google Arts & Culture platform hosts millions of artifacts and pieces of art, ranging from prehistory to the contemporary, shared by museums across the world. But the prospect of exploring all that art can be daunting. To make it easier, we dreamt up a fun solution: connect people to art by way of a fundamental artistic pursuit, the search for the self … or, in this case, the selfie." 

While the Google Arts and Culture app can be a fun and interactive way to explore museums and exhibits across the world from the comfort of one’s home, on the subway, or virtually anywhere with a mobile device, it can also serve as a guide when visiting museums.

 

Google Arts and Culture app users can use their device’s camera to scan in artwork, while at museums and galleries, and the Art Recognizer feature quickly matches with the existing database and provides information about the piece.

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Is Google Arts & Culture safe for my kids?

Parents should be aware that the Google Arts and Culture app is an interactive way for children to explore exhibitions in museums across the world, learning the history and stories surrounding pieces of artwork and art movements.

Google Arts and Culture is free to download and use, does not feature any in-app purchases or advertisements, and is rated for teen users ages 12 years and older and is safe for kids.

Two features of the Google Arts and Culture app should definitely give parents pause, when determining if the app is appropriate for their children including Google’s use of facial recognition technology and the number of permissions needed to run the app.

While Google maintains that the selfie-artwork match feature is just a way to get people to connect more with art and culture, some believe that, while Google may not be keeping a database of scanned faces, they’re certainly using those images to train and improve the quality of facial recognition artificial intelligence technology.

Parents who are concerned about the data mining practices or privacy issues of Google products may wish to bypass this app.

The Google Arts and Culture app asks for a lot of permissions to be used to full capacity, which parents should be made aware. In addition to camera access, to use for selfie uploads or scanning artwork, the app also asks to access location data, in order to recommend local events or highlight cultural points of interest.

Google Arts and Culture app users need a Google account to sign in, and the app will ask for access to the device’s contacts, to collect and store user preferences. Lastly, the app will ask for storage access to store data for offline use.

Privacy concerns aside, the Google Arts and Culture app is a fun and educational way for users to explore exhibitions they may not otherwise have access to, and adding the virtual reality feature by pairing with a VR headset takes the user experience to another level.

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Google Arts & Culture Parent Rating

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