Apple has always bundled the famous YouTube app with all of it’s iOS devices from the beginning. Allowing users to enjoy the millions of videos that are posted online everyday.
However, recently Apple had a falling out with Google and decided to forgo the remaining time on their agreement that they had to drop both Google Maps and YouTube. People thought the removing of both would be a huge mistake by Apple, and we’ve heard those opinions from all around the web.
When the iOS 6 jailbreak finally arrived, there were 100s of people who were trying to port the app back over from iOS 5.1.1, however none succeeded. So support for the new iPhone 5 4″ screen has never been there, till now.
Let’s have a look at the new standalone YouTube app for the iOS 6.0+ platform and see how it performs.
Though YouTube isn’t integrated into the iOS system any more it still does perform quite well on the iPhone and iPad. I would actually go out on a limb and say that it performs better without being limited by the iOS team.
When first running the app it shows the most popular videos like the going to the website online. You can sign in to the app to access your subscriptions and when you start it up fresh it will show your personal recommendations tailored to you.
Like the new crave to have sidebar navigation, to access your settings and channels just tap the button in the left corner to gain access and swipe right to close. You can choose them from the settings to only show videos from your subscriptions instead of YouTube recommendations tailored to your history and subscriptions.
The whole experience seems to be built around the search function. It is accessed on almost every page you go through the app. You can search by typing in the search bar or you can use your voice to search. In the results you can choose to view individual videos or channels. You can refine your search by tapping the gear icon and trimming down results by relevance, upload date, rating or view count and also check for only videos that have closed captioning. If you can still not find your video you can always go into the settings and turn off safe search, which Google has enabled by default.
To watch a video all you need to do is tap on it which pulls up its page and the video starts playing. The page shows the description, creator and options to see related videos or comments.
When you rotate your device to landscape mode, the video automatically transitions to full screen on the iPhone, while on the iPad you have to click to expand it to full screen. Once in full screen you get the options to rate it, share it, favourite watch later, or add to playlist. If the video is offensive you even have the option to flag it for inappropriate content. There is also the usual options to jump through the timeline to parts you want to watch when you want to watch them, add closed captioning (if available) and use air play.
To check on playlist or videos that you have uploaded by tapping on your account name after getting into the right sidebar. You can also check your purchases, history, watch later and favourites Even though you have access to uploads and purchases you have made there is no way to do either on the iOS app.
Overall the improvement that you see with the app being removed from Apple’s closed sandboxed iOS is absolutely great and I don’t think it could have gotten as good under Apple’s builds. Now that it is under Google’s control we can see it become greater without having to wait for new iOS builds that come out every few months or so.
You can download YouTube now on the App Store for free for iPod/iPhone and iPad versions, but requires iOS 5 or later.