NewPipe: the better YouTube client for Android

Martin Brinkmann
Jan 1, 2022
Apps
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51


NewPipe is an open source YouTube application for Android that has all the features that the official YouTube application does not support, or only offers when you pay for it.

newpipe

The official YouTube application is preloaded on most Android devices. Many users find it barely useable, as Google is limiting its capabilities on purpose. It lacks background playback, downloads, shows lots of advertisement, and is quite annoying in other regards as well.

Users who subscribe get some of these features back, but there are better alternatives out there. One of these is NewPipe.

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I mentioned NewPipe briefly in How to deal with Google's and YouTube's aggressive popups (before you continue, sign in), which I published in 2020.

You can download the application from the developer site or from F-Droid. Note that you need to enable the installation of applications from unknown sources on the Android devices to do so.

NewPipe displays content using the system's language and region by default, but you can change these parameters in the settings easily. Select Menu > Settings > Content, and switch the preferences app language, default content language, and default content country there.

You may browse trending videos or use the built-in search. NewsPipe does not use proprietary Google APIs and sends the bare minimum that is required for its functionality.

Tap on a video to start its playback on the device. The video plays immediately, there are no ads. NewPipe offers all the features that you expect, and more. You see comments below the video, may play the video in fullscreen mode, and add it to a playlist.

Other features include changing the quality of the stream, enabling background playback and downloading the video to the local system for offline access. Background playback happens with a single tap. You may then hide the NewPipe app on the device without losing the playback of the stream.

Downloads work equally well. Just select the download button, select whether you want to download the video, only audio or only captions, and pick a quality. NewPipe displays the size of the download automatically in the download dialog. You are asked to pick a download folder the first time you use the download feature.

The app supports a pop-up player, which plays the video in an overlay on the screen while you may use different apps on the device. It works similarly to picture in picture modes of web browsers.

Another handy feature of NewPipe is the ability to subscribe to channels, without signing in to a Google account. Just hit the subscribe button to add a channel to the subscriptions to create a custom feed and get quick access to subscribed channels. The bookmarking feature goes hand in hand with this. Create your own playlists or import them, to play an endless stream of content on the device whenever you want to.

The Settings are extensive and offer everything you could possibly want, and more. You may turn off comments, and the showing of "next" or "similar" videos, configure notifications in detail, disable the watch history, change the application's appearance, or set default resolutions and formats for video and audio content.

Closing words

NewPipe, and the previously reviewed Skytube app, are niche apps that add lots of usability features to the YouTube viewing experience on Android that the official YouTube application does not support.

Now You: which apps or browsers do you use to watch content on YouTube?

Summary
software image
Author Rating
1star1star1star1star1star
4.5 based on 12 votes
Software Name
NewPipe
Operating System
Android
Software Category
Multimedia
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Comments

  1. Yuliya said on January 1, 2022 at 9:36 am
    Reply

    NewPipe: the best YouTube client for Android

    1. Robert said on January 1, 2022 at 4:29 pm
      Reply

      …and FreeTube for Windows, Mac, and Linux.

      https://freetubeapp.io/

      1. NeonRobot said on January 15, 2022 at 8:45 am
        Reply

        Thaaanks!!!

    2. Dumbledalf said on January 2, 2022 at 12:00 pm
      Reply

      Or just use iteroni.com (one of many Invidious instances) and not rely on an app that breaks every week and the developer has to issue an update because of YouTube’s stupid API breaking such programs all the time.

      1. Yuliya said on January 2, 2022 at 3:02 pm
        Reply

        Browsers are horrible video players imo. On any platform. Sometimes they even fail to properly detect and use a device’s hardware capabilities and fallback on to software decoding. This is extremenly inefficient and on a portable device hardware decoding is crucial, unless you want to kill its battery in two to three hours – an this is being generous, assuming a new and high-end device is used.

        I will deal with NewPipe being broken once every.. few momnths? I think last year I’ve stumbled across two incidents where NewPipe was broken. It’s not that bad, I’ll take it over a browser.

    3. Plants said on January 2, 2022 at 11:38 pm
      Reply

      >NewPipe: the best YouTube client for Android

      Except for when it bugs out, i.e. constantly.
      The dated UI is the icing on the cake.

      1. Shiekh Chibar Ss. K said on January 3, 2022 at 2:56 pm
        Reply

        Dated ui is a joke, how can a gui get dated, or are you some kind of * [Editor: removed] that like colors and yellow shit all over the ui that make it trash an useless

      2. NeonRobot said on January 15, 2022 at 8:47 am
        Reply

        Yeah, people dumb these days.

      3. Plants said on March 17, 2022 at 9:30 pm
        Reply

        Shiekh Chibar Ss. K,

        Are you being unironic?
        How about that hamburger menu that goes against the modern gesture-based navigation because it interferes with the back gesture and is discouraged by Google themselves?
        Lack of bottom bar?
        It’s outdated, period.

  2. Clippy said on January 1, 2022 at 9:54 am
    Reply

    Simply the best. Fast-forward during silence and speed/pitch settings are great for lectures.

  3. junpet said on January 1, 2022 at 10:15 am
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    Newpipe with Sponsorblock is the next level.

  4. Croatoan said on January 1, 2022 at 12:17 pm
    Reply

    I use YouTube Vanced on Android. Installation is the same as NewPipe.

    https://vancedapp.com/

    1. Mike said on January 1, 2022 at 5:22 pm
      Reply

      This app is illegal, it’s a crack of the original app. NewPipe is a legal app. You may not care and have no issue using illegal or piracy apps, but I am just point it out that this app is illegal to inform people that do care.

      1. Yash said on January 2, 2022 at 10:21 am
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        Vanced is not illegal and certainly you won’t be getting any court orders. However logging in with your Google account is risky as that may get your account blocked – all hypothetical but perfectly possible.
        Use a burner google account for Vanced.

      2. darkjeric said on January 2, 2022 at 11:11 am
        Reply

        What do you mean by “illegal”? There isn’t a government in the world that will criminally punish you for using or even making this app. It does break the Google EULA, but that’s still not really covered by the word ” illegal” or anything.

        One thing that makes Youtube Vanced more useful for me is you can login with your Google Acount, and everything you watch gets recorded on your Google Account and all other Youtube apps (Vanced or otherwise). As soon as you follow 50+ channels, it gets harder to remember what you already watched.

      3. Mike said on January 2, 2022 at 7:04 pm
        Reply

        @Yash, @darkjeric
        Vanced is illegal because it’s a cracked version of the YouTube app, which Google obviously holds the copyright to.
        It’s like running a cracked version of Photoshop, the copyrights of Photoshop belong to Adobe.
        There is a reason no store accepts it unlike NewPipe which is available in F-Droid for example. The reason is that it’s a cracked illegal app.
        I am not talking about breaking the TOS of youtube etc, I am talking about the copyrights of the youtube app.

      4. Yash said on January 3, 2022 at 9:39 pm
        Reply

        Reason why Vanced is not on F-Droid has more to do with it having Google bits as it wasn’t built from scratch like Newpipe.

    2. Dam said on January 2, 2022 at 10:17 am
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      Vanced need to install 3 apps in your phone, its very bloated

    3. But what about Freetube on Windows?!? said on February 18, 2022 at 8:58 pm
      Reply

      >When you’re talking to someone and they let slip they use Vanced too.

      Vanced crew represent. Sponsorblock, adblock and background play make Youtube usable on Android. Wouldn’t use it without those features. Sponsorblock integration especially.

      I don’t care about copyrights either, they’re for squares. Paying for content should only be done when you want to support it. Pirate the rest I say.

  5. X-tended MotoMan said on January 1, 2022 at 12:27 pm
    Reply

    “NewPipe does not use proprietary Google APIs and sends the bare minimum that is required for its functionality.”
    Translation: NewPipe works without Google Play services, you can deactivate it on your phone. Or even better if you plan on using a custom ROM, you do not need to install GApps in any shape or form. Thankfully there are many apps that work this way so you can have a superfast, supernice phone loaded with supernice app without anything Google ever installed on it. HIGHLY recommended. Find a ROM that doesn’t bundle GApps, look at the phones it supports and then buy one of those. You will be happy and amazed with your superphone that is blazing fast and doesn’t need to be charged every day. A Google-free life is a happy life.

  6. toohandsomele said on January 1, 2022 at 12:48 pm
    Reply

    I use puretuber, no microg needed.

  7. ryuk said on January 1, 2022 at 1:23 pm
    Reply
  8. Ashray said on January 1, 2022 at 2:05 pm
    Reply

    It’s a nice app, but could be better in terms of performance. Also they should add more theming options.

    1. Mike said on January 1, 2022 at 5:26 pm
      Reply

      It is as performant it can be.
      It doesn’t use the youtube api, it’s illegal to use their API without Google’s consent.
      NewPipe scrapes the webpages of youtube and scraping full html pages is slower than scraping apis, so it’s normal to be slower.

      1. Robert Morris said on January 3, 2022 at 4:23 am
        Reply

        Illegal in what country?

        Contrary to what Google thinks, they are not a country and can’t arrrest you for vioalting their TOS. They can block the app, but that’s within their rights.

    2. Mobuto Web said on January 6, 2022 at 9:32 am
      Reply

      Yeah blame the app, when your Android Jellybean device with minus GB of RAM doesn’t play 4k youtube videos on your 480×320 screen using the dial-up internet 0,000000000000001 mb connection in your village.
      Go kick the guy pedalling the rural-broadband bike in the internet power-shed instead of complaining here.

  9. KamiOh said on January 1, 2022 at 2:10 pm
    Reply

    Not support live chat . >_<

  10. semce said on January 1, 2022 at 5:41 pm
    Reply

    Never understood why I would ever watch youtube on my phone.

    1. Anonymous said on January 2, 2022 at 7:36 am
      Reply

      What boomers say for $400 Alex.

    2. Peterc said on January 2, 2022 at 8:07 pm
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      @semce: Imagine — hypothetically, purely for the sake of argument — that on Christmas Eve you have to take an ailing relative to the emergency room, where you spend four and half hours cooling your heels in the lobby until your relative is admitted and then an additional five hours until your relative is discharged. Two or three hours in, a lot of people would be so desperate for distraction that they would be willing to watch YouTube on a friggin’ *smartwatch*. You know — hypothetically. ;-)

  11. svim said on January 1, 2022 at 6:01 pm
    Reply

    This looks to be a really useful Youtube alternative, thanks for posting this article.
    I gave up using the Youtube app on my mobile devices well over a year ago, Google’s oversight on it had become really annoying and apparently has only become even more so. It’s not surprising that TikTok market share of the online video market has grown so quickly.

  12. Blagi said on January 1, 2022 at 9:54 pm
    Reply

    I have issue with Newpipe. Looks like cashing while first watching.

  13. Rhino Jockey said on January 1, 2022 at 10:43 pm
    Reply

    Is there anything like this for smart tvs?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on January 2, 2022 at 7:42 am
      Reply
      1. Rhino Jockey said on January 2, 2022 at 4:42 pm
        Reply

        @ Martin Brinkmann & ryuk

        That’s good to know. Alas, no good for Roku; and, even if so, those sobs blacklisted developer mode on my devices.

    2. ryuk said on January 2, 2022 at 1:35 pm
      Reply
  14. Anonymous said on January 2, 2022 at 1:34 am
    Reply

    I prefer YouTube Vanced.

  15. Pet said on January 2, 2022 at 7:23 pm
    Reply

    I will not install anything that isnt in google store. I hate google, but i more i hate unknown things on my phone.

    1. Baaa said on January 2, 2022 at 11:24 pm
      Reply

      That was funny. Clearly you have no idea how Google do business, and how badly they watch over what malware spreads through apps in the play store. Millions of people use NewPipe, you don’t have to. But what you have to do, little sheep, is to watch ads on your YouTube app.

    2. ryuk said on January 3, 2022 at 9:37 am
      Reply

      @Pet

      NewPipe is on F-Droid so it’s as safe as it gets.

      1. Ger said on January 4, 2022 at 3:29 pm
        Reply

        I have a Nvidia Shield TV Pro I have be using Smart Tube Next Beta with very few problems / issues; most problems / issues are resolved within 48 hours. There is still an issue that they have yet to address; that is, there is no way to play the “Free with Ads movies” offered by Youtube.

        There are a few features I would like to see; for instance, a direct in app link to leave sugestions and comments.
        Also, I wish they would provide an option like a: “I have already seen this, and I do not want to watch this again” tag.
        They do have a “Not interested” tag.

        IF you are interested you will find it here:

        https://github.com/yuliskov/SmartTubeNext

        Note: This is the only officailly approved site and ways to install this app! Followe these instructions carefully and you will have pleasent experience.

        Please note, I am not affiliated with, nor do I receive any compensation for this.

      2. Ger said on January 4, 2022 at 5:33 pm
        Reply

        I have modified my repley slightly, as I found errors or unintentional misinformation in my statements, sorry.

        ?I have a Nvidia Shield TV Pro (2019)

        I have been using Smart Tube Next Beta for almost two (?) years, with very few problems / issues. Most problems / issues are resolved within 48 hours.

        However, there is still an issue that they have yet to address; that is, there is no way to play the “Free with Ads movies” offered by Youtube.

        There are a few features I would like to see; for instance, a direct in app link to leave sugestions and comments.

        Also, I wish they would provide a tag option like a: “I have already seen this, and I do not want to watch this again” tag. They do have a “Not interested” tag.

        IF you are interested you will find it here:

        https://github.com/yuliskov/SmartTubeNext

        Note: This is the only officailly approved site and ways to install this app!
        Followe thier instructions carefully and you will have pleasent experience.

        Please note, I am not affiliated with, nor do I receive any compensation for this.

        BTW: The STN apps only work on android based TV systems such as, Amazon FireTV, Nvidia Shield TV, and Android TV (I do not know about Google TV).

  16. Yowam said on January 2, 2022 at 11:57 pm
    Reply

    Only Vanced!

    1. Anonymous said on January 3, 2022 at 10:06 am
      Reply

      Youtube Vanced is not a privacy alternative to Youtube here, Youtube Vanced still do transmitted network information to Google, it is more like a configured version of Youtube but not really up to date with the latest Youtube (Play Store) version, and since Youtube Vanced mod it out the Youtube app, it’s not different much except having some feature added and ads get block, making Youtube video more convenient to watch.

      NewPipe is more private, simpler in design, have advanced settings, fast and efficient.

  17. Niko said on January 3, 2022 at 10:51 am
    Reply

    Android TV only, Smart Tube Next:

    https://github.com/yuliskov/SmartTubeNext

  18. Mike said on January 3, 2022 at 3:16 pm
    Reply

    I love Newpipe, but I don’t want it to get too popular or Google will nuke it. Kind of like how ad blockers have transitioned from an obscure, geek thing 20 years ago, to something that is now under constant attack from the industry.

    Vanilla Youtube is shaping up to be just as unwatchable as conventional television is, which I guess is inevitable when the money-men take over.

  19. ci4noz said on January 4, 2022 at 4:41 pm
    Reply

    NewPipe and all similar apps are good to bypass all limitations and annoyances of official Youtube, but have the downside that you no longer can add videos to your playlists on your Youtube account.
    For those like me that have a lot of playlists this is a heavy discouragement to use third party apps.

  20. Broken Signatures said on January 5, 2022 at 1:55 pm
    Reply

    ATTENTION!!!

    I downloaded NewPipe v0.21.15 with file name ‘org.schabi.newpipe_981 from F-Droid, tried to install via Android installer, not possible, then used SAI installer which is for specially packed APK’s but can handle ordinary APK files too, it warns:

    INSTALL_FAILED_UPDATE_INCOMPATIBLE: Package org.schabi.newpipe signatures do not match the previously installed version; ignoring!

    So I went to NewPipe’s Github

    https://github.com/TeamNewPipe/NewPipe/releases

    and download from there, installs perfectly.
    Tried again to install F-Droid version with the latest already installed from Github, but still failing.
    Anyone have any idea what’s going on, what’s up with the signatures?

    1. MasterOfMuppets said on January 6, 2022 at 9:37 am
      Reply

      Signatures work that way. You can’t install the F-droid version on top of the GitHub version (all android apps work this way) and vice versa. Go with the GitHub version, F-droid always take forever to offer the latest versions.

      1. no bs said on January 7, 2022 at 7:44 am
        Reply

        Thanks mom, I’m relieved!

  21. Pena said on April 15, 2022 at 9:47 am
    Reply

    This app does not work anymore.

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