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YouTube site picture-in-picture video returns w/ iOS 14.0.1


YouTube’s picture-in-picture mode now looks as though it is supported again on Apple devices — even those without a Premium subscription — thanks to the latest iOS 14.0.1 update.

Late last month, our colleagues over at 9to5Mac reported that picture-in-picture mode was being tested with the YouTube app for iOS. But like on Android, picture-in-picture mode has only been available to those with a YouTube Premium account for some time on iOS. Another notable is that YouTube Premium costs $11.99 per month in the US, but due to Apple’s App Store 30% commission policies, you’ll pay $15.99 if you sign up on an iOS device through the app.

A workaround to get picture-in-picture was to use the YouTube mobile site, which allowed those with a subscription to view videos in the floating player across all areas of iOS. However, it appears that around the same time this option started being tested within the dedicated app, the web workaround was unceremoniously removed.

This might not have been a major problem for most, as iOS 14 was the first to introduce picture-in-picture mode to the iPhone for the first time. It is more frustrating though for iPad users, for whom the feature has been baked in for a little while now.

According to MacRumors, the latest iOS 14.0.1 update is now restoring the ability to activate picture-in-picture mode for iPads and bringing the option to iPhones when using a mobile browser. Another bonus is that you also don’t even need a Premium subscription to activate picture-in-picture mode on your device. This feature isn’t even limited to Safari either, as tapping the small picture-in-picture icon within the YouTube player interface appears to work in Chrome and Firefox on iOS devices.

At least until the native YouTube app on iOS supports picture-in-picture on all iOS devices, this is a notable solution for those wanting to watch videos without needing to have the application open. This update hasn’t affected the background play that is still available to Premium subscribers via the YouTube iOS app.

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