YouTube enables picture-in-picture on iPhone for premium subscribers

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Google on Tuesday rolled out an "experimental" picture-in-picture feature for its iOS YouTube app that allows premium subscribers to view video content while using other apps.

For now, the picture-in-picture mode is limited to YouTube Premium customers and is considered an experimental feature, which means it must be manually activated before use. When enabled, the feature allows users to minimize YouTube's viewing window into a "mini player" that sits atop other apps.

To take advantage of PiP, subscribers must first visit YouTube.com/new while logged in to their Google Account and navigate to the "Picture-in-picture on iOS" experiment. Selecting "Try it out" activates the option for that account.

Next, opening the YouTube app on iPhone and playing a video, users can swipe up or press the home button to close the app and reveal a mini player. The video will continue playing in the small PiP pane.

Locking the screen pauses the video, though content can be resumed via lock screen controls, YouTube says.

9to5Google reported on the feature earlier today.

YouTube announced plans to roll out a PiP mode for U.S. subscribers of its premium service in July. The company enabled and disabled support for iOS 14's picture-in-picture multiple times in 2020, though today's release suggests a permanent solution is in the works.

The PiP experiment is limited to iPhone and ends on Oct. 31.