YouTube Premium subscription cost was increased in some regions recently. Premium users can enjoy ad-free access to videos, the ability to watch videos or listen to music in the background, and high-quality video streaming. YouTube claims to have 80 million paid and free trial Premium users around the world. Now, the Google-owned company has announced new features for Premium users. YouTube users across platforms, including smartphones, smart TVs and tablets, will now be able to enjoy videos at a higher picture quality. Some features introduced are also backed by artificial intelligence.
In a blog post, YouTube confirmed that Premium users can now stream an enhanced bitrate version of 1080p videos on more platforms now. Initially introduced for only iOS users, the feature is now available for Android users. Premium subscribers can also stream videos of this quality on smart televisions and other Android devices like tablets. The 1080p High Bitrate feature can be enabled from the Quality menu option.
A higher bitrate yields a higher quality viewing experience by offering more information per pixel resulting in clearer images with more details. Google notes that videos that were submitted in 1080p can only be eligible for an improved bitrate. Videos uploaded at resolutions higher or lower than 1080p, live streams and YouTube Shorts will not support the 1080p Premium feature.
Meanwhile, YouTube has also brought Conversation AI, which can recommend videos similar to the one you’re watching or anything else related to your search if asked. This AI chatbot can also answer questions regarding the video, as per the compnay. You can access the tool by tapping the Ask button. This feature, however, is currently only available to Android users in the US.
You can also ask the AI chatbot to summarise lengthy comments into a smaller paragraph with distinctive identified themes. YouTube suggests that creators can use this feature to collect ideas for their future content.
When switching devices, Premium users can now continue watching a video from where they left off on another device with the same account. For instance, you can continue the same video on YouTube if you stop watching it on your phone and play it on your TV. YouTube will indicate the video with the label Continue Watching. Earlier this feature was only available for users switching between phones and the Web. Now it can be enjoyed across all platforms.
Long-term Premium subscribers can now receive virtual badges, which claim to reward users for their loyalty. Users above the age of 18 can earn these badges by engaging with the Premium benefits like Afterparty, YouTube Music, Continue Watching, etc. By clicking on locked badges on the Your Premium benefits page on your YouTube account, you can learn how to earn that badge.