On Tuesday, August 24th, Google rolled out a new feature exclusively for the iOS systems. The new feature consists of an experimental picture-in-picture feature for the iOS YouTube app. The new feature will allow premium subscribers to view video content while browsing other apps. Browsing YouTube or playing YouTube in the background while surfing other apps was not possible before. Some people used the double screen technique to do so, but for iPhones, the feature did not exist. Now Google is offering the picture-in-picture feature; however, only those with a YouTube Premium subscription can use this feature.
According to the Cali-based tech giant, the feature is limited to YouTube Premium members only; the company has also revealed that the feature would be considered an experimental one. This only means that the feature must be manually activated before use. When the feature has been activated, it allows the users to minimize the YouTube window into a mini player. This mini player will let the user browse and surf other apps.
To activate the new picture-in-picture features, subscribers need to log into their YouTube account and go to the “Picture-in-picture on iOS” experiment. Clicking on the “Try it out” button to activate the new feature for the account. Now the user can open the YouTube app on their iPhones and start playing a video. To activate the mini-player the users need to either swipe up or press the home button to close the YouTube app. The video will continue playing in the small Picture-in-Picture pane. Locking the screen of the iPhone pauses the video; however, YouTube has mentioned that the content can be accessed using the lock screen controls.
YouTube announced plans to roll out a Picture-in-Picture mode for U.S. subscribers of its premium service in July. YouTube had enabled and later disabled the same feature for iOS 14 back in 2020. However, the recent launch of the same feature seems to suggest that this might be the permanent solution.
The new feature is limited to iPhones and ends on October 31.