Today at the Google for India event, the company made several announcements focused on healthcare content on YouTube. In particular, it is testing a feature to let users switch between multiple audio tracks in different languages. For now, this feature is only available with a set of healthcare videos with language support for English, Hindi, Marathi and Punjabi.
Videos with multilingual audio will have an option called “Audio track” under the settings button, which will have a list of available languages for the clip. Technically, this feature could be rolled out in non-healthcare categories as well, but YouTube is currently limiting this feature to select videos.
Unfortunately, there is no visual marker in search results to identify if a video is available in multiple languages. So users will have to look for that specific option in the settings of every healthcare video in India. That’s a bummer.
What’s more, Google also announced that it’s working with a set of creators to test its dubbing product called Aloud. The product, which was originally created by the Area 120 accelerator, helps creators transcribe, translate and dub the original content in multiple languages. The company said that it is making this tool available to a “small group of healthcare providers” initially. It didn’t specify which languages Aloud is supporting at the moment.
The company also clarified that the videos with multiple language audio tracks may or may not have been created through Aloud.
“Video is a particularly effective format for sharing health information in ways that are accessible and digestible not only to a professional audience but to everyone. We want to help truly democratize important health information. And, we remain committed to working closely with experts in healthcare and investing in technologies that will enable them to create multilingual content efficiently, to reach audiences at scale,” Ishan John Chatterjee, YouTube India’s director, said in a statement.
YouTube is also partnering with more healthcare-related organizations in India — including Narayana, Manipal, Medanta and Shalby — to have them create content in different languages such as English, Hindi, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Gujarati and Bengali.
In the past few months, YouTube has rolled out multiple health-related initiatives. In September, it started to show a new panel in search results called “Personal Stories,” related to ailments like cancer and mental health conditions like anxiety and depression. In October, the streaming service opened up a certification program for health-related channels in the U.S. to get a special badge. This badge certified them as accredited health-related creators.
Apart from language and healthcare-related announcements, YouTube also launched Courses in India, which allows users to purchase a course from an educational creator and get access to ad-free videos and other materials.