Despite YouTube being among the most popular streaming services out there, it lacks Picture in Picture support on the iPad. Even on the iPhone where Apple has added PiP support with iOS 14, the YouTube app does not work while others including Netflix are working with any update. Thankfully, there’s a workaround using which you can play YouTube videos in PiP on the iPhone and iPad.
The workaround involves using Safari on the iPhone or iPad to playback YouTube videos. The catch here is that you cannot use the official YouTube app with Picture in Picture mode. Nonetheless, this is still a good compromise in some cases.
How to Play YouTube Videos in Picture in Picture Mode using Safari
Step 1: Open YouTube.com in Safari on your iPhone or iPad and proceed to play the video of your liking.
Step 2: Switch the video to full-screen mode. Then in the media player window, tap the PiP window on the top left corner. You cannot play a video in PiP without first playing it in full-screen mode.
Step 3: The PiP window will come up and you can then continue browsing the web on Safari on your iPhone or iPad while watching the video. You can even exit out of Safari and use other apps with the video playing in PiP.
The above method will also work on any other website until and unless they are using their own embedded media player that does not play well with Safari.
Using Picture in Picture in YouTube App
If you want to use Picture in Picture mode in the official YouTube app on your iPad, you will have to use an app like PiP-it! This is until YouTube gets around to adding PiP support in iOS 14 and iPadOS 14. Given how slow the company is in updating its iOS apps with support for new OS features though, I will not suggest you get your hopes up for a possible update right around the time iOS 14 is released
PiP-it! is free to download and use for three days, but after that, one has to pay $1.99 to unlock it. There are other similar apps in the App Store as well. They all basically do the same thing as the method mentioned above, just make it easier by integrating with the Share menu.
Step 1: Open the YouTube app on your iPhone/iPad and proceed to play a video.
Step 2: Tap the Share button in the YouTube app and select More.
Step 3: Select select the Picture-in-Picture with PiP-it! option. Wait for a second or two and you will be redirected to the YouTube video playing in a Picture in Picture window inside PiP It!
You can now press the home button to go to the home screen with the video still playing in PiP. On the iPad, you can resize the PiP window to your liking as well. On the iPhone, this will be possible if you are on iOS 14.
Do you use your iPhone or iPad to regularly watch content on YouTube? If so, do you find the lack of Picture in Picture support in the YouTube app annoying? Do you think its high time Google should get around to adding official support PiP support to the YouTube app? Drop a comment and let us know!