If you're using the YouTube app on your big-screen TV, you may have noticed a few changes in the last few days: a new sound and animation that appears when you launch the app, and the ability to see comments next to what you're watching. you are watching .
The sound is official, and YouTube talked about it in detail in a blog post (opens in a new tab). Something "vibrant, engaging and easily recognizable" was needed, so YouTube enlisted the help of sonic brand studio Antfood to come up with the perfect audio snippet.
According to YouTube, the three-second clip shifts from "rich, uplifting tones that signify the irresistible gravitational pull of YouTube" to a major seventh chord that "represents how YouTube lets you explore the things you really love." appear in more YouTube apps over time.
The other change to the YouTube TV app is unofficial, but was spotted on Reddit - opens in a new tab (via Android Police - opens in a new tab) ), and offers the ability to display the comments. In TechRadar we have also seen the function appear on YouTube on an Android TV.
When watching videos, you have the option to display comments in a sidebar on the right. This can be useful for videos that have a lot of threads below the line that you want to review, but you still need to launch the mobile app if you want to reply to comments or add your own.
So far, YouTube has not acknowledged that the comments feature is being tested, but it is clearly visible to some users. Whether or not it will eventually roll out to everyone who uses YouTube on a TV remains to be seen.
Analysis: Keeping Your Eyes On YouTube
Most of the changes to YouTube and similar apps are aimed at keeping more eyes on the app longer, which of course increases engagement and ad revenue. These latest updates may not seem like much, but they could still make a difference.
Netflix's startup sound and animation are so well known that Netflix's annual content showcase is named after him. YouTube hopes that its own intro clip (opens in a new tab) will become as familiar to viewers and become as famous as its static logo.
Adding comments will make a bigger difference to the actual viewing experience, as this is where many of the key discussions and debates around a video take place. With some clips, the comments are just as interesting as the actual content.
It's worth noting that comments can be turned on and off, at least according to our tests: you won't have to cycle through them all if you don't want to. We'll have to wait and see what YouTube officially says about this change when the time comes.