It’s been an interesting week for YouTube. The news that they were pulling their service from Amazon devices may have angered some fans, but today’s news will surely bring joy to others.
After many months without an update to the YouTube app on Xbox One we were beginning to investigate third party options. After all, the Xbox One S has been in customer living rooms since August of 2016 and the app still didn’t support 4k video at all. That is, until today.
That’s right, after months of waiting YouTube has finally updated their app on the Xbox One platform. The biggest enhancement is full support of 4k video and framerates up to 60 frames-per-second. You’ll need to run the app on an Xbox One S or Xbox One X to view videos in 4k.
The increased resolution is a welcome update. The higher frame rate will also appeal to gamers and sports fans in particular.
Unfortunately YouTube left out a few features that we’d really love to see. The most notable missing feature is support of high dynamic range (HDR) video.
YouTube made at least one other nice enhancement to the usability of the app. As you move the cursor over videos they will start to play. It’s a nice touch that aids in showing what to expect from the list of search results. Unfortunately that seems to be where the enhancements end. Perhaps most aggravating is that the app still uses its own on-screen-keyboard. It is clunky and slow to use. The keyboard provided by the Xbox software is better in every imaginable way – not the least of which being the ability to use your phone as a keyboard.
The new update to the YouTube app is long overdue on the Xbox One. It is far from perfect, and still has some serious flaws, but finally having the ability to watch in 4k at 60 FPS is a very welcome improvement. We just hope this next update won’t take so long.