YouTube Go was first launched back in 2016, and some of us here in the office were actually quite a fan of it. It offered a lightweight alternative to the regular YouTube app and also helped save on the data required to stream and watch videos on the go. However, Google has now announced that they’ll be sunsetting the YouTube Go app in August this year.
According to Google’s post on the YouTube Go sunsetting, it was originally launched in 2016 for users in locations where connectivity, data prices as well as the prevalence of low-end hardware prevented many from getting the best experience when using the main YouTube app. However, Google and YouTube have since brought a number of improvements to the regular YouTube app that now makes it good enough for these users on entry-level devices as well as those on slow mobile networks. YouTube says that they’re also building out more user controls to decrease mobile data usage for those on a tight monthly quota.
“Using the main YouTube app, YouTube Go users will be able to participate in creation and community and have access to an overall improved user experience. Thank you to our YouTube Go users – we are excited to welcome you into the main YouTube app community!” – Meaghan, Team YouTube
Indeed, by switching over to the main YouTube app, you’ll be getting a plethora of quality of life changes that aren’t on YouTube Go. This includes the ability to comment, post create content as well as to use the dark mode theme on the app. However, there’s no word if they plan to adopt the YouTube Go app’s local video sharing function which lets users share downloaded videos to a nearby user via WiFi direct.
YouTube Go is just the latest casualty of Google’s push to end these ‘lite mode’ versions of their products and services. Back in February, Google announced that they were also killing off Lite Mode for Chrome on smartphones, with the reason being that mobile data plans are now cheap and fast enough and offered enough GB of data to surf the web normally.
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