YouTube for Android is updated with more bug fixes and a greater experience to watch your beloved shark and cat videos. But there’s more going on than meets the eye here.
Not only has the Google YouTube team implemented a long series of bug fixes, but now YouTube is better integrated with the Sony Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and Google TV YouTube apps. So you’re able to send videos from your Android device to your television. What’s new here?
YouTube Android App Updated – Image credit Ant Pruitt for aNewDomain.net
When I read this announcement on the YouTube blog, at first I found the update underwhelming. Sure we expect bug fixes with updates, but the feature of sending video from your handheld Android to your television is old news — to me, anyway. As a Google TV user, I’ve been doing this for several months.
Here’s an excerpt of what YouTube blogger Timbo Drayson announced:
What if you could send YouTube videos from your phone to your TV with a click of a button? It’s an idea we’ve been working on since 2010, and today we’re taking the next step.
We’re making it even easier to play videos from your phone or tablet on your TV, with a YouTube app update for Android and Google TV that automatically pairs your devices on the same WiFi. Just find a video on your YouTube app for Android — like the latest video from GoPro or H+ The Digital Series — click the TV icon that appears, and the video will play instantly on your Google TV.
Like a remote control, you can pause, scroll or skip to the next video with your mobile device as it plays on your TV. Since your devices are connected in the cloud, you can also do things like find the next video to watch from your tablet or browse around the web on your phone, all while the video plays on TV. You can even connect multiple devices to the TV to have your friends add to the playlist.
Google Play offers a Google TV remote app that can be installed on Android smartphones and tablets which offers similar functionality. This is the stock Google TV remote app, not the newly developed remote apps for Google TV such as Able Remote. I stumbled upon this viewing feature and was hooked early.
The kids and I enjoy watching YouTube videos on my Android smartphone or tablet, but seeing the videos on the big screen is more enjoyable. They especially love to see their own video on the television promoting our Yet Another Tech Show podcast. Sending the video to our television is as easy as sharing a photo from your Android device. But instead of sending it to an email composition or social network app, just send it to the Google TV remote app.
Image credit Ant Pruitt for aNewDomain.net
This is similar to what the so-called update brings to the table.
As long as the devices are connected on the same internal network, the video will display on the television. When I tested it with my Sony PS3, I noticed that volume controls are available for use via the Android handheld’s volume buttons but playback controls are limited to either play or stop.
By contrast, the Google TV remote app offers full playback control once the video is sent to the television. See the tablet interface below.
Image credit Ant Pruitt for aNewDomain.net
The YouTube for Android update may surprise for some, but for me it’s old news. I know the Google TV market share is next to nil, so the average guy didn’t already have this capability.
But by adding this feature to the top tier gaming consoles, Google is out to make sure YouTube stays in the game. Have you tried the new features? Share your experience below or just email me at ant@aNewDomain.net.
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I think you’re missing the point here, yes this type of screen sharing has been in place since 2010, but this update makes it seamless with Google TV. No pairing, no scanning codes, nothing. It just works, and it works easily.
Hey thanks, Tenkely for reading and your comment. The Android device actually had to be paired with my PS3 when i tested. I had to enter an alphanumeric code for my PS3 to talk to the device over my LAN. Similar to how the standard GoogleTV Remote app worked.
Again, thanks for your comment!
I’m speaking strictly about the Google TV integration, not the other networked devices. :)