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Looking for YouTube's Autoplay option? Google moved it!

Google released updates for the company's YouTube application for Android and Apple's iOS operating system recently. One of the changes of the update moved the autoplay toggle; it is now displayed in the media player.

YouTube users who use the web version, e.g. on a desktop operating system such as Windows, will get the same change. Google is rolling it out currently to all users who access YouTube on the web.

Most users should see a prompt the next time they play a video on the site stating "looking for autoplay? Choose whether videos automatically play next".

youtube autoplay moved

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It is easy to dismiss though and while some users may spot the new toggle in the player interface right away, others may wonder where the autoplay button is or whether it has been removed.

The autoplay toggle was displayed in the sidebar on desktop versions of YouTube up until recently. Google introduced the autoplay behavior on YouTube in 2015.

Autoplay is set to ON by default, which means that YouTube will start to play the next video in the queue, or the next video that its algorithm picked to be watched, automatically after the active video ends.

Some users dislike autoplay on YouTube as it loads a new video and prevents users from interacting with the current one or checking out other recommendations. If you like to read and leave comments, autoplay is problematic.

How to disable autoplay on YouTube

youtube autoplay off

Autoplay has been added to the video player on YouTube. If you want to turn off Youtube autoplay, all you have to do is click on the new icon -- which displays "autoplay is on/off" when you hover over it. A click or tap toggles the option, and the status indicates the change immediately.

YouTube remembers the state of autoplay even if you leave the page or close the site entirely. Please note that the toggle does not interfere with the auto-playing of videos when you open them on the site, it is just designed to allow or prevent autoplay of the video that is in queue after the current one ends.

The change improves the visibility of the autoplay toggle on YouTube, and it may lead to more users disabling next video autoplay functionality on the site.

Now You: what is your take on autoplay functionality?

Summary
Looking for YouTube's Autoplay option? Google moved it!
Article Name
Looking for YouTube's Autoplay option? Google moved it!
Description
Google has moved the autoplay toggle on the company's video site YouTube. If you open the web version of YouTube, you find it attached to the media player now.
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Ghacks Technology News
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Comments

  1. Anonymous said on December 23, 2020 at 3:21 pm
    Reply

    I noticed this last week. Now its easier to accidentally turn on.

  2. Sylvio Haas said on December 23, 2020 at 3:44 pm
    Reply

    Hello, Martin
    Is there a way to eliminate the miniatures that appear (overlay) at almost the end of all videos advertising other videos? Thank you and I wish you a great new year!

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on December 23, 2020 at 3:50 pm
      Reply
    2. You No Cards said on December 23, 2020 at 6:10 pm
      Reply
  3. dot gov said on December 23, 2020 at 4:16 pm
    Reply

    what is your take on autoplay functionality?

    I like the new placement, but I don’t use YT’s autoplay much, so whatever.

    Instead I use the extension “Watch Next: YouTube” which lets me make a playlist of just the videos I choose, that will autoplay them all. The only downside is that “Watch Next: YouTube” can’t seem to keep them in fullscreen. If anyone knows how to simply do that in the browser somehow, please share. I already know about solutions that don’t use a browser.

    1. Rnk said on December 24, 2020 at 12:23 am
      Reply

      @dot gov

      You could just use YouTube’s “Add To Queue” feature. https://support.google.com/youtube/answer/9546304

      1. dot gov said on December 28, 2020 at 7:42 am
        Reply

        @Rnk

        Thnaks, but nope, I can’t do that. You need a Google account for that, and they demand my phone number to open an account. No thanks to that.

      2. Anonymous said on February 2, 2021 at 1:41 am
        Reply

        actually, phone number is optional. You dont really need it.

  4. Khai said on December 23, 2020 at 4:43 pm
    Reply

    “I’m bored… lets change a feature!”
    “why not.. we’ve not changed one for 15 minutes….”

    – Google Youtube planning meeting

  5. Tom Hawack said on December 23, 2020 at 4:54 pm
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    A good move IMO. If a acknowledgement cookie is removed or blocked you’ll get the message on every new YouTube watch video start. With uBO just add following in ‘My filters’ :

    [youtube.com##.ytp-promotooltip-container] without the [ ] of course

    Autoplay is always off here thanks to a small armada of extensions and scripts which deeply modify YouTube, without which I’d never open that site.

  6. Iron Heart said on December 23, 2020 at 5:54 pm
    Reply

    I didn’t take much notice of this optical change because I am blocking YouTube autoplay with the Enhancer for YouTube extension by MaximeRF – I am using the extension for other things as well, this is just one of its features.

    Add the following to “My filters” on uBlock Origin and your YouTube experience will be about as perfect as it gets:

    youtube.com##ytd-popup-container
    youtube.com##ytd-consent-bump-lightbox.style-scope
    http://www.youtube.com##.opened

  7. Autoplay said on December 23, 2020 at 6:26 pm
    Reply

    The more troublesome problem with YouTube and FF autoplay is when landing on a new video it always autoplays (or in some cases it sort of does but it glitches and autoplay for second until it stops) and doesn’t seem obey some settings under about:config according to several info sources on how to stop autoplay, and/or FF on YT doesn’t obey the settings for autoplay blocked for both audio and video (which can be set on the left side or URL bar, and probably also somewhere under the Preferences page).

    So I finally found a combination that seems to work with the following settings:

    dom.media.autoplay.autoplay-policy-api;true
    media.autoplay.blocking_policy;2
    media.block-autoplay-until-in-foreground;false

    At least this works on FF84 under Ubuntu as of now…

    1. ULBoom said on December 24, 2020 at 12:26 am
      Reply

      WIth FF, I keep video and audio autoplay off in Options>Privacy and Security, then when I visit a site where I want videos to play, I click the lock thing on the URL bar and a drop down for just that site appears to enable one or both.

      I also clear History, cache, etc on close ( In Options>Privacy and Security, too) with everything except site preferences checked.

      Glad the settings you noted work and hope they continue to, they’ve changed a bazillion times over the last few years, save them! :)

      We use FF in Windows and Linux, profiles seem to be transferrable between Windows and most Linux distros; the only challenge is finding the freaking thing in Linux, it’s not always in the same place. Moving profiles makes set up much faster and gives a consistent look.

    2. Anonymous said on January 7, 2021 at 1:34 am
      Reply

      I noticed this on YouTube 10 minutes ago. Is there a way to enable the sidebar on there again? Because that’s where Autoplay belongs, not on the video itself.

  8. Mark S. said on December 23, 2020 at 7:04 pm
    Reply

    FINALLY!!!! The correct place of an autoplay button is on the player. They had added it first on the player of Google Drive, nice to see they moved it to the correct place in YouTube too. I like the consistency they did there.

  9. Anonymous said on December 23, 2020 at 7:45 pm
    Reply

    ‘Liked Videos’ playlist is still set to autoplay without any option to disable it…

  10. Joe Plumber said on December 23, 2020 at 7:55 pm
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    Moving the functionality is one thing, but I’ve experienced it multiple times that autoplay miraculously switched itself on even though I turn it off before (and I’m signed in). Happens over and over again (but not every single time)

  11. ULBoom said on December 24, 2020 at 12:13 am
    Reply

    What about the main autoplay switch on the top right of any You Tube page over the list of suggested videos? I only watch You Tube on Windows, not sure if the big button is in android.

    I really don’t like autoplay and I guess it doesn’t like me; turn it off, it comes back on when you manually select another vid. Loading circle does the same thing.

    I guess this change eliminates one step and users will tend to skip the gear thing, setting resolution, get whatever auto blur YouTube wants and leave annotations intact (Subscribe! Like! Obey!)

    1. Iron Heart said on December 24, 2020 at 7:22 am
      Reply

      @ULBoom

      Read my comment above. Enhancer for YouTube by MaximeRF successfully disables YouTube’s autoplay for me.

  12. Nickie Oakwood said on January 8, 2021 at 1:19 am
    Reply

    Just what I needed thanks dude. Thought they were trying to force us on to YT premium. I have that but prefer web version on desktop.

  13. George Lass said on January 11, 2021 at 10:00 pm
    Reply

    YouTube says I have this setting turned off, but videos still autoplay. There seems too be no way to stop it anymore.

  14. Anna said on January 13, 2021 at 7:04 am
    Reply

    thanks for providing a clear screenshot on how to do this! I love that! I didnt have to scroll thru a giant webpage or watch a 10 minute video I got my answer right away. ty!

  15. Anonymous said on January 16, 2021 at 8:28 pm
    Reply

    I’m paying for YT and that button doesn’t show up on a lot of videos… and you guessed it, they autoplay. I HATE having to manually stop them.

  16. DesignerTJP said on January 16, 2021 at 9:15 pm
    Reply

    Hi! Thank You for telling me about the new AutoPlay Location! Thought I was alone in this eventual surprise and dealing with a “Big Brother” Control Crisis again. It’s pretty clear YouTube set this shlit up to operate like a TV Set. You just turn it on (surf over to YT) and the site will broadcast continuously while you mop the floor, chop potatoes, or stare out the window at what used to be our pre-covid freedom.

  17. Anonymous said on January 17, 2021 at 12:57 pm
    Reply

    Ahh. Thank you!

  18. Adrian said on January 24, 2021 at 1:50 pm
    Reply

    Having problem two days now with youtube autoplay. Does not work when casting with chromecast. None of my 2 phones and tablet. Seems like Youtube updates 1 day ago. I think they may have changed autoplay or its a bug… who has this problem also? Autoplay is on but does not work. Stops after every video. So annoying!

    1. Harm said on January 31, 2021 at 11:16 am
      Reply

      Correct, they broke it for chromecast devices.

  19. Anonymous said on January 30, 2021 at 7:50 am
    Reply

    Thank you!! there are so many choices when I did a Google search. The top choice was the old set up where it was in the right top of the page. Your answer was about the 10th I tried and was soooo easy to understand. When I have questions on anything again, I will look for you!!Thank you ever so much again. I can’t stand auto play!

  20. Erzsebet said on February 2, 2021 at 2:59 pm
    Reply

    Why can’t they just leave well enough alone. I say if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!!!

  21. pebuilder said on February 5, 2021 at 4:47 pm
    Reply

    new autoplay feature, hate it! get rid of it i say!
    I watch videos / channels i want to watch not what youtube thinks i should watch based on search criteria.

  22. LibT said on February 7, 2021 at 12:18 pm
    Reply

    Thanks for providing this helpful info.
    I was wondering why YouTube was disregarding my Browser setting.

    Unlabelled, monotone icons are often missed – or a mystery.

    Auto-ANYTHING is an annoyance ….. unless set by the User.
    Why does Bug Tech feel they have to IMPOSE features on people rather than offering them as an option ?

  23. Lesley Ann said on February 15, 2021 at 2:36 pm
    Reply

    Thanks so much, this has been driving me crazy.

  24. Tracy said on February 28, 2021 at 2:30 am
    Reply

    Finally, a site that provided with an easy answer!! Thanks for pointing out exactly where they moved the autoplay option to. Easy peasy. 👍🏻

  25. Anonymous said on March 3, 2021 at 11:40 am
    Reply

    Fucking hell was it really neccessary to make us read that wall of text before you got to the fucking point

  26. Anonymous said on March 10, 2021 at 12:24 am
    Reply

    Not only did they move it they turned it on!

  27. Richard Bowen said on March 11, 2021 at 9:21 pm
    Reply

    You’d think with what looks like a slide, you’d just be able to slide the function ON or OFF. Sigh.

  28. Anonymous said on March 12, 2021 at 7:45 pm
    Reply

    Thank you.

  29. jane dough said on March 12, 2021 at 8:12 pm
    Reply

    If there IS a slider to turn off AP it ain’t on the majority videos ANYWHERE.wtf. really. everything i read about disabling it is BS, not there, doesn’t work….
    why can’t they give us what we want? is it THAT hard to be consistent.
    Click on the video and you will see a thing to turn AP off. NO you won’t….do this, do that.
    NOTHING IS THERE or works.

  30. Anonymous said on April 13, 2021 at 5:53 pm
    Reply

    Retarded developers is what’s causing this. It is completely inconsistent across the website – now when playing videos part of a playlist, auto play next bug is automatically on and no option is visible anywhere to disable it.
    Only when playing videos outside of a playlist the minuscule button appears under the video.
    Of course is also inconsistent on mobile where everything is hidden again in different places.

  31. Rachel said on April 27, 2021 at 12:32 am
    Reply

    Thank you! I think they actually did this to make it HARDER to find. We have our autoplay OFF (we’ve had porn videos autoplay after children’s cartoons with our small children in the room, so autoplay is a no-go here) and when they moved this function they also apparently turned it back ON. I’ve been trying to locate it to turn it back off.

  32. Anonymous said on May 3, 2021 at 1:36 am
    Reply

    I don’t have that slider on my account… which sucks, because I actually like the autoplay feature. I use it to listen to songs in the background while I’m gaming. But since a couple of days it doesn’t autoplay anymore.

    The strange thing is, when I log out of my account it’s suddenly there and I can’t toggle it on/off…

  33. Anonymous said on June 8, 2021 at 8:07 pm
    Reply

    THANK YOU! I hate freaking autoplay! It would be more tolerable if the algorithm would let you do a *real* search, i.e. one that doesn’t throw in all the cat videos and political crap I watched last week but that are irrelevant today, when I’m trying to figure out how to fix my blasted washing machine! Personally, I think the switch was better placed where it used to be, up near the top of the queue, and I regret the ridiculous amount of time it took for me to find the new toggle switch. But meh, I’m old, so there you go.

  34. BMe said on June 8, 2021 at 8:28 pm
    Reply

    I turned the autoplay to OFF, then but it showed up as ON the next time I rebooted my computer. Thanks, Google, you’re as bad as Microsoft now when it comes to screwing with the users.

  35. arthur said on June 12, 2021 at 11:41 am
    Reply

    It doesn’t improve the visibility of the toggle at all, what a joke. What better visibility than to have a large toggle right above the queue? A bunch of dummies thought this stupid thing up. And when are they going to put a toggle to disable autoplay on the watch later queue. That’s what they should have spent their effort on.

  36. serban134 said on June 21, 2021 at 3:37 pm
    Reply

    I dont like it

  37. WAK said on July 29, 2021 at 11:58 pm
    Reply

    Well, I tried it on the first video, but I STILL had to pause every single other tab I had open in a Window to prevent them from playing. Even hovering the toggle & turning it on & off on each tab still required me to pause each vid.

    Doesn’t matter that I have the sound all muted to keep them from interfering with things I AM playing/attending to. All it takes is anyone of those to decide to play in the background & it f***s my laptop. Granted, I’ve got way too many tabs open which effects performance anyway. I just haven’t had a chance to screen each one, bookmark them to their appropriat files for the research I’m doing.

    And, why so many open tabs you ask? Well, in most cases one video leads to a lead for another & I wanted to keep them open b/c things move around in youtube in the right side column where associated or other videos are recommended. I couldn’t take the chance that when I finished with one video, maybe closed the page & came back later, that the next one would be in the same place or even still available.

    I even turned off Autoplay at the Windows Device section & the only effect that that had was stopping the stupid stuff (Thank God, Finally!) on the TVGuide site, which along with some weather sites & my Email account are all open all the time 24/7. I’m just not as sophisticated a user as many others are & sometimes I am the source of my own computer problems given what I want/need access to every day. That & I have a touch off ADD & Asperger’s. I get very impatient with things, especially load times.

    NOTE: To Sys. Admin/Moderators I think I went Off Topic. If you need to, you have my permission to cut the last 2 paragraphs & this note.

  38. BK said on August 1, 2021 at 11:44 pm
    Reply

    what if the autoplay button is missing? Meaning it’s gone from the sidebar AND not present near the bottom of the video?

    1. novak mirkovic said on August 11, 2021 at 2:17 am
      Reply

      same here. auto play on desktop is gone

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