A little while ago, we reported that offline playback was coming to YouTube to match up with Google’s affordable Android One platform, and now it’s finally landed in India. It’s somewhat ironic that offline playback launched as part of Music Key for Play Music All Access users, in nations where it isn’t most needed. Still, it’s finally going live in India, allowing those that rarely have access to 3G to playback videos online, let alone 4G. This was supposed to go live a few months ago, but we suppose it’s better late than never, and you don’t need to have a Music Key subscription to enjoy this, either.
How you use offline playback is pretty simple, you’ll now see an extra icon below the video view with a downward arrow, that’s your offline playback button. Hit that and you’ll be asked which quality you want to download, with HD 720p being the highest option available it would seem. You’ll also be told, roughly, how much space these videos will take up on your device, which is a nice touch for the space conscious. There are a few screenshots of the process in the gallery below, but it’s really quite simple to follow. As you might have guessed, you’ll find these videos in the offline section in the pull-out menu.
Launching offline playback in India is an important step for YouTube. Many in the region struggle to get a solid 3G connection – never mind 4G – to watch their favorite music videos, news bulletins, device reviews, or podcast shows. With offline playback, those users can now just download a selection of videos to watch offline at their leisure. It’s a nice feature to see go live and we just wish it didn’t take as long as it did. Let us know in the comments if this is going to change the way you use your Android smartphone or tablet.