YouTube has silently implemented some new “tweaks” to its Android app, as pointed out by Android Police. If you’ve noticed that the app does not allow you to skip forward in a video by tapping on the progress bar, or its video quality runs in lower resolutions; then this new update is to be blamed.
The first is introduced by the streaming platform as a way to prevent users from accidentally skipping parts of a video that they’re currently watching. YouTube claims that this is aimed at reducing the chance of user error by mistakenly tapping the end of the progress bar instead of the Full View button at the far left corner of the screen. Users can still skip scenes by dragging the red dot forward, as well as dragging it back to view earlier parts.
Surprisingly, the video quality setting is actually implemented as a feature rather than a bug. YouTube explains that the adjustments is part of a much-requested simplification for playback quality for its mobile app. The update now adds three video quality settings: Higher, Data Saver, and Auto – with the latter applied as default. As a result, videos on mobile are now viewed in a recommended resolution (usually 480p) to ensure a balanced data consumption rate, regardless whether you are using cellular data or WiFi. Image quality is adjusted manually on a per-video basis, and you are required to navigate to the app’s settings page if you wish to change the default output to Higher or Data Saver.
Due to the lack of announcement regarding these so-called updates, users have mistakenly identified the new features to be bugs. These, of course, resulted in several complaints to be posted on Google support forums and Reddit threads. It is not mentioned if YouTube plans to revert back the changes or rectify the aforementioned “issues” at this time.