YouTube has reportedly started testing a native picture-in-picture (PiP) feature in its iOS app. This allows users to continue watching videos in a floating window while still operating other apps. It is what you would basically find on other streaming apps like Netflix.
Apple had earlier started supporting this feature for its iPad users with iOS 9 and for iPhone users with iOS 14. This is despite the fact that YouTube had not officially supported the feature yet. Well, it now looks like iPhone users will be lucky enough to have the feature supported from both ends.
In a report from 9To5Mac, some users have already spotted the PiP feature on their smartphones. Others also say that the feature is currently only working with a few videos. This is what suggests that YouTube is just running a test at the moment.
Picture in Picture working on iPadOS with the YouTube app.
(But only worked with this live stream, there must be some codec trickery happening behind the scenes for certain playback scenarios). pic.twitter.com/75vG7Ai4ln
— Daniel Yount (@dyountmusic) August 27, 2020
This is one feature that has been on demand from iOS and Android users for quite some time now. The fact that users can continue watching videos as they work on other apps would be so efficient for many.
Currently, it is available only for users who are subscribed to YouTube Premium. So, for users to gain access to the PiP feature, they might need to be pay first. This is a real bummer especially for users in countries that don’t even have YouTube Premium in the first place. Kenyan users would be a really good example as the service never seems to get here till now.
Hopefully, the feature will be rolled out to all users after some time or better yet, have YouTube Premium distributed globally.