YouTube Go vs YouTube App: What’s the Difference?

Mehvish

Most of the popular social apps now have a lite version. These apps are designed for low-budget phones with less memory and for places with poor Internet connectivity. 

YouTube also has a lite version of its app that goes by the name YouTube Go. In this post, we will compare YouTube Go with the main YouTube app.

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Before that, let’s get to know YouTube Go and why it was launched.

What is YouTube Go?

Like other lite apps, YouTube Go is a toned-down version of the regular YouTube app. 

It is designed for the first-generation Internet users who want to watch interesting and popular videos on YouTube without the distractions present in the regular YouTube app. This app focuses on controlling the data usage and making offline video sharing easier.

It thus makes both the features easily accessible to the users and does not bury them under the settings. The redesigned version of the YouTube app takes away all the clutter and makes offline video viewing a treat on Android devices/phones.

Part of the Android Go program, which includes apps like Files Go and Google Go, the YouTube Go app will eventually be bundled on the phones with the Android Go optimization. 

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Announced last year as a beta in India, YouTube Go is now available in more than 130 countries.

The YouTube Go app requires users’ phone numbers to tell them which of their contacts have YouTube Go installed on their phones too. It is a mandatory step in case no phone number is linked to your Google account. 

Once registered, the same phone number is also linked to your Google account.

Wondering what are the primary differences between the two apps? Read on.

YouTube Go vs YouTube App

1. Available Only on Android

Unlike the regular YouTube app that is available across platforms, YouTube Go is available only on Android. It is not available for iOS and neither can you access it from PC.

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The Android users can download this app from the Play Store in the countries where it’s available. In case it’s not available in your country, you can always sideload it from the APKMirror website

2. Watch Video Preview

YouTube is full of videos with misleading titles and it is only after you watch it for 1-2 minutes that you realize the video is fake. Thankfully, YouTube Go solves this issue.

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When you tap a video in the YouTube Go app, it starts a quick preview of the video, where you can check the content and the quality.

Based on that video snapshot, you can then take an informed decision whether you want to play/download the video or not. In the regular YouTube app, one has to watch the video to confirm its authenticity.   

3. Download Videos for Offline Viewing

While the regular YouTube app focuses on online videos, YouTube Go is designed for offline videos. It lets you download YouTube videos for free on your Android device, a feature that is available only in a few countries in the regular app.

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You can watch the downloaded videos unlimited times. The videos, however, can only be accessed via the YouTube Go app as YouTube encrypts the videos on your device. 

This means that the videos won’t be available in your gallery app but you can still share them with your friends. More on that below.

4. Keep a Check on Data and Storage Usage

YouTube Go is an app that is designed to reduce data usage. Since it was developed for low connectivity areas and places where mobile data prices are high, it provides complete transparency regarding the amount of data consumed by the videos.

When you tap a video to play or download it, it shows you the available video qualities with the amount of data required for each one of them. In case you want to download the video to your device, it will also show the available space on your device.

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Each time you can choose from the multiple video formats depending on the condition of your Internet connection and the amount of available storage space on your device for offline videos.

Although the regular YouTube app shows the data required for downloading a video, it does not show the same while playing one.

5. Offline Video Sharing

While the YouTube Go app lacks the online sharing feature for social media, it makes it extremely easy to share offline videos with nearby YouTube Go users. This app packs only a few buttons and Share is one of them.

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Located in the top bar, the feature lets you share your downloaded YouTube videos with nearby friends and family without using any Internet connection. You can share multiple videos at a time. The app uses Wi-Fi Direct and Bluetooth for the data transfer.

There are two things, however, that you need to remember while sharing the videos on YouTube Go. First, the videos can be shared only between YouTube Go users i.e. both the sender and the receiver should have YouTube Go installed on their Android phones.

Secondly, the shared videos need Internet for the first time, a tiny bit on the receiver's phone, to perform a mandatory Internet check. The mandatory check does not require a huge amount of data, it lies in KBs only. 

6. Change Language

Another interesting feature that the YouTube Go app brings is the language selection. You can choose any language and all the navigation links in the app will change to that language.

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Unlike the regular YouTube app that requires changing the device language to change the app language, the YouTube Go app comes with a built-in language feature. 

For instance, if you change the YouTube Go language to Hindi, the app will show the navigation links in Hindi without affecting your device language.

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To change the YouTube Go language on your Android device, tap the profile picture icon present at the top-right corner followed by Language. Then, select your preferred language.

What’s Missing?

The app clearly focuses on offline viewing and sharing. It lacks many basic YouTube features such as comments, sharing to social media, subtitles, subscriptions and even channel descriptions. 

Currently, there is no way to directly go to a YouTube channel. All you can do is watch the recommended videos or perform a manual search.

Is It Worth Downloading?

Well, that depends on you. If you want a clean app whose goals are to let the users watch videos without any distraction, download videos for offline viewing, keep a check on data usage and easy offline sharing, then the YouTube Go app is perfect for you.

Do let us know how you feel about the app in comments below.

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Mehvish

Written By

Mehvish

Mehvish is a technology enthusiast from Kashmir. A computer engineer by profession, she's always been keen to help when someone finds technology challenging. She keeps to herself and is an introvert. This doesn't stop her from being curious about the world around, especially when it comes to technology.