YouTube appears to be trying out a picture-in-picture mode for the desktop version of the platform, with the testing phase believed to be involving a small number of select users, according to a new report. As part of the experiment, eligible account owners may start to play a video and then perform other tasks such as searching for another video or heading over to YouTube's home page while the current video will continue to play and appear on a floating window in the bottom-right corner of the desktop screen. The picture-in-picture mode was also introduced to YouTube TV as part of the Android 8.0 Oreo update to the app.
This YouTube video experience may seem familiar to everyone as it is already available on the Android and iOS versions of the video sharing website. YouTube now seems to be aiming to bring the same convenient capability to its web version as part of an effort to make it easy for users to browse through the site's vast selection of video content while continuing to watch their current clip with no interruption, provided the picture-in-picture mode actually rolls out to the public in general. In terms of how users can handle floating videos, the test is said to allow for pausing a video in addition to the playback option, replaying the clip, and watching the next video, with the succeeding clips organized as an overlay. While video titles are typically located at the top of the video, the picture-in-picture mode relocates them to the bottom while the complete playlists are visible through an icon found in the bottom-right corner of the video player.
However, the test seems to be lacking a functionality for switching off the picture-in-picture mode, meaning the only option users might have is just to close windows individually using the button sitting at the top-right corner of the window. On the other hand, the picture-in-picture mode in the mobile version of YouTube provides an option for users to enable or disable the floating video player, though it remains to be seen whether or not the mode is set for a final release at all.