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YouTube TV finally adds picture-in-picture for iPhone and iPad

After months of promises and and extreme patience from customers, YouTube TV finally has added a picture-in-picture feature (also referred to as PiP) for iPhone and iPad. The company confirmed the rollout this week, and it started appearing in the app a few hours later, apparently triggered by a server-side update.

The feature allows you to continue watching a show in a smaller window while doing something else on your device.

YouTube TV's picture-in-picture feature shown atop a web browser on an iPhone.
Phil Nickinson/Digital Trends

To activate PiP mode, you’ll need to be actually watching a video first, and then switch to another app, or swipe up to go to the home screen. The active video will shrink into a corner of your device, and you can then drag it to any other corner you wish.

The feature has been long-requested by iOS users — and it was added to the YouTube app in June 2021. But it wasn’t made available for YouTube TV until now. Neal Mohan, YouTube’s chief product officer, said in February that it was coming, and a month and a half later it’s here.

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iPhone & iPad users 🔊

We’re happy to share that picture-in-picture is now rolling out to your iOS 15+ devices. Simply select a video to watch and swipe ⬆️ from the bottom of the screen to return to the device's homepage. The video can scale down and move across your screen.

— YouTube TV (@YouTubeTV) March 30, 2022

YouTube TV is believed to be the second-largest live TV streaming service in the United States. It last reported “more than 3 million” subscribers in October 2020, but hasn’t given an update since. Hulu With Live TV last reported having 4.1 million paid subscribers, and Sling TV had 2.486 million subscribers at last count.

YouTube TV costs $65 a month and comes with the ability to have a half-dozen second profiles attached to a subscription, each with the ability to “record” as many shows and movies as they want. It’s available on every major streaming platform, including Roku and Amazon Fire TV, which are the two largest platforms in the world. It’s also available on Google TV and Android TV, Apple TV, various smart TV platforms, and in a web browser.

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