It’s Christmas eve, and the holiday festivities are in full swing. As we gather for family reunions and Christmas parties, Google has also returned with its annual Santa Tracker, an interactive website that offers educational games and activities in addition to tracking the mythical Father Christmas as he travels the globe to deliver presents.
As per its name, Google’s microsite lets people track Santa’s busiest time of the year, although the live tracker is only available at 6PM on Christmas eve for Malaysian time. In the meantime, Santa’s Village has a ton of games that are perfect to keep your kids occupied as you go through the fun, fulfilling, and ultimately exhausting family period.
They’ve also incorporated the Santa Tracker into Google Assistant (he’s still training the reindeer now in preparation of the long journey ahead, apparently), and you can test your knowledge of holiday traditions for different cultures on Google Earth.
And you can “invite Santa into your home” (sounds a little creepy, I know) by Googling “Santa Search” on Chrome and clicking “View in 3D”. Using augmented reality tech, Santa appears in your camera viewfinder, and you can capture the moment that Santa burgled his way into your house. That option isn’t yet available however, because Santa is still prepping for his globetrotting trip (till 6PM Malaysian time, at least).
The Santa Village is also available via an Android app, although iOS users can still access the site with a web browser. Of course, it’s all fun and games, and it’s nice to see Google load up their virtual Christmas Village with activities that are actually helpful—both in terms of educational value, and as a way to keep kids occupied throughout the holiday season.