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Multitask with YouTube's picture-in-picture app update

Google heard you wanted more YouTube in your YouTube, so you can now watch videos while browsing at the same time.

James Martin/CNET

Want more YouTube in your YouTube? That wish just came true.

In the latest app update, an entirely overhauled UI includes a multitasking feature, letting users shrink a video while browsing the app. Call it picture-in-picture.

YouTube isn't the first to do this, however. Last year Samsung introduced this concept with a feature exclusive to its Galaxy line, letting users "pop out" a video while browsing the phone as usual. Soon after, a third-party developer mimicked the feature with an Android app.

With the greater screen real estate of today's phones, the feature fits right in.

To give multitasking a try, launch YouTube on your Android phone or tablet (the iOS app will be updated soon), and begin playing a video. Then:

  • Swipe the video down with one finger to minimize it, or tap the arrow in the upper-left corner. You can now browse YouTube as usual.
  • To maximize the video, tap it, or swipe up.
  • To quickly close a minimized video, swipe it to the left or right. You'll notice the audio fades in tune with the motion -- nice touch.