Google continues to update its mobile apps to bring them in line with recent design guidelines. YouTube for Android is the latest to receive the treatment, with the video app seeing a radical makeover and adding a slew of new features.
The biggest addition to YouTube for Android is multitasking. If you’re currently watching a video in the app, you can simply drag down to create a smaller viewing window in the bottom right hand corner. You can then continue to use the app as normal – searching for videos and playlists, for example – while the video plays in the foreground. If you want to bring the video back into focus, you simply swipe it back up.
And Google has radically changed the design of the app too. YouTube for Android now sports that familiar card interface that we’ve seen from other Google products, plus a much cleaner UI in general. The slide out navigation menu on the left hand side has also been improved, and there’s a quick access option that pulls down your history, favourites, playlists, and more.
Still, it’s not entirely perfect. The HQ/HD quality options – along with the Closed Captions toggle – have been moved to an awkward menu in the top right hand corner of a video. That makes it more difficult to quickly switch the quality of the video, but at least there’s an option to default to High Quality on mobile networks.
The new YouTube for Android is available on the Play Store right now, although Google says that it’s a staggered update. Keep checking back if you don’t see it at first.
Update: And just like that, the iOS app has received the same treatment. You can grab the updated version from the App Store right now.