• There is now a YouTube beta Android app in which users can test out new features.
  • However, the launch of the YouTube beta app comes directly on the heels of a major YouTube site outage.
  • Hopefully, this YouTube beta app will be a proper beta app with major testing, and not just a facade.


In case you missed it yesterday — although we’re not quite sure how you could — the YouTube site went down for about an hour last night. We wrote about it, various other Android sites wrote about it, even the BBC wrote about it.

It’s not very often YouTube goes down on that level, so it made some serious headlines. Now, hot on the heels of the outage, Google very quietly launched a YouTube beta program for Android.

Despite the unfortunate coincidental timing, the YouTube beta app doesn’t have anything to do with sitewide outages. What it will do is give users access to new and upcoming features within the app for testing purposes. Assuming testing goes well, those features could eventually roll out to the main YouTube app.

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However, Google has a bad habit of opening beta programs for Android applications but still conducting the bulk of its testing on the server side, making the beta version of the app little more than a facade (we’re looking at you, Google Maps beta). It’s too early to tell whether the YouTube beta app will be like Google Maps in that regard, or be more like the Chrome browser’s various beta programs, which function mostly as a proper beta user experience.

If you want to check out YouTube beta for yourself, you can sign up as a beta tester by clicking here or on the button at the bottom of this article. Once accepted, you’ll get a notification on your Android device which will download the beta version of the YouTube app. If you want to switch back to the stable YouTube app, you can always opt-out at a later time.

Click the button below to sign up for YouTube beta: