YouTube: Video downloads in the desktop browser are tested

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YouTube: Video downloads in the desktop browser are tested

Image: YouTube

YouTube is testing a function with which videos can also be downloaded from the portal via the desktop browser in order to be able to play them offline – for example if your own internet connection does not allow a smooth stream. The test is scheduled to run until October 19.

Function must be activated

Since the download function is only available to premium members, only these can use the Experimental section from YouTube take part in the test and activate the download function. However, not every premium member is given the opportunity to take part in the test. It is not known whether YouTube will gradually activate all users; there is no way to actively apply for the test. Users who were able to activate the function also sometimes report stuck downloads that remain permanently at 0 percent. But after a few minutes and restarting the download, they worked.

  • Download test in the experimental area of ​​YouTube

    Download test in the experimental area of ​​YouTube (picture: AndroidPolice)

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    Playback not outside of the browser

    If you take the test, an additional button will appear under the image to download the video when playing videos. The resolution for video downloads can be set in the settings, whereby Full HD (1080p) is currently the maximum possible resolution. YouTube indicates the current versions of Chrome, Edge and Opera as compatible browsers. It doesn’t matter whether Windows, macOS or Chrome OS is used as the operating system. Downloaded videos are after the download, for which a progress bar is displayed in the Downloads section can be called up, which can be accessed via the menu on the side, which also includes the media library, history and any of your own videos.

    Can only be played via YouTube, but can also be played offline

    The playback takes place via the portal via the browser. The video downloads can only be played if the computer has not been used for more than 30 days without Internet access. YouTube also checks whether the premium membership still exists. There does not seem to be a way to play the videos independently of the browser and YouTube.

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