YouTube recently updated their app for mobile phones and tablets and it looks rather slick, if not slightly limited in terms of functionality on the landing page because things have been split up into tabs. The reason for the app update, however, wasn’t just for kicks – according to Google, YouTube’s traffic is now mostly generated by mobile devices. The streaming service on mobile now has more mobile traffic than it knows what to do with, and that introduces a discoverability problem for videos and new channels launching on the service. The new app tries to solve these and other issues and its worth a look if you’re not already using Firefox for Mobile to listen to your videos with the display locked.
The Home page is now split up into the Home, Subscriptions, and Account tabs. Previously these were only available through a swipe in from the left on your device, which mimics the way YouTube on the desktop is set up and ordered. Subscribed channels now have a little green dot under their avatar which indicate when they’ve had new videos uploaded to them. Its still possible to overlay a video on the app while you’re browsing elsewhere, which is nice.
Tech-wise, there’s the Stats for Nerds options now available in the settings menu, which allows you to see real-time statistics about how your internet connection works with YouTube’s service. Unfortunately playback with the lock screen on still isn’t available, and background play is still behind the Music Key paywall – its never going to come back for videos, realistically.
The app also now includes a video editor built-in. You can pick from several filters to make your videos look interesting or better, you can edit and trim the video before uploading, and you’re able to add music to it in the editor as well. While YouTube has been the lifeblood for video content creators like Smosh, FRANKIEonPCin1080p, and Vsauce, it still gets a lot of footage from normal people like you and me. Pick this app up if you don’t have it already on your Android device. There isn’t an updated version for iOS yet, but Google says it’s on the way.