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A feature that will allow users in India to watch videos in various languages is being tested by YouTube

At today’s Google for India event, the firm announced a number of updates to YouTube’s health and medicine section. In particular, a feature allowing users to select from several different language audio tracks is currently being tested. This functionality is currently only accessible for a small collection of healthcare videos subtitled in English, Hindi, Marathi, and Punjabi.

If a video supports many languages, there will be a drop-down menu labelled “Audio track” in the video’s settings that displays all of the languages that are included in the video. Although YouTube could theoretically expand this capability to include films outside of the healthcare sector, it presently only does so for a small number of carefully selected clips.

A lack of a visible indicator in search results for multilingual video content is problematic. Users in India will need to navigate the settings menus of every healthcare video available to them. What a shame.

In addition, Google said that it will be collaborating with a group of producers to pilot test its dubbing product, Aloud. The Area 120 accelerator was responsible for the original development of the product, which now assists authors in the tasks of transcribing, translating, and dubbing the original content into a variety of languages. The business has said that at first, only a “limited number of healthcare practitioners” will have access to this resource. There was no mention of the languages supported by Aloud.

The firm further specified that it is unclear whether or not Aloud was used in the production of the videos including different language audio tracks.

“Video is an excellent medium for disseminating health-related knowledge to a wide audience, not only experts. If we can do our part, vital health information will become more accessible to more people. According to YouTube India Head Ishan John Chatterjee, “We are dedicated to working closely with specialists in healthcare and investing in technology that will enable them to develop multilingual content effectively, to reach viewers at scale.”

YouTube is expanding its healthcare partnerships in India by teaming up with institutions like Narayana, Manipal, Medanta, and Shalby to produce videos in regional languages in addition to the more common ones like English, Hindi, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Gujarati, and Bengali.

YouTube has released a slew of new health-focused features in recent weeks. Google began displaying a new section in search results titled “Personal Stories” in September. This section focuses on illnesses such as cancer and mental health disorders such as anxiety and despair. The streaming platform launched a certification scheme in October, allowing health-related channels in the United States to earn a unique badge. This symbol verified that the bearer was an approved health content developer.

Aside from the language and healthcare-related updates, YouTube also announced the debut of Courses in India, which enables users to purchase a course from an educational creator and have access to the author’s ad-free videos and other resources.