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Google is slowly adding the new slide-out navigation menu to all of its major Android apps, and today it's YouTube's turn. The latest incremental update to the official video app doesn't add a whole lot more than that, but what's there is handy: the menu that used to be available via the "app button" in the upper-left corner only on the homescreen is now enabled on all standard UI screens with a quick swipe to the left, just like in the shiny new version of Gmail. As always, YouTube is a free download, available for all Android users.

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Strangely, the app button uses the little "back" icon everywhere, not just in UI screens where it will actually go back, and has not yet been switched to the "hamburger" menu button. (For an explanation of why this matters, check out Ron Amadeo's breakdown of the new sidebar design standards.)

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The only other major addition to the app is "video suggestion overlays during playback," but I haven't gotten anything to appear in any of the videos I've tried. The standard improvements and bugfixes have been applied, and at least some Play Store reviews cite a noticeable improvement in stability and streaming performance.

What's in this version:

* Open the guide from anywhere in the app for quick access to your subscriptions and feeds
* Video suggestion overlays during playback
* Bug fixes and stability improvements

Jeremiah Rice
Jeremiah is a US-based blogger who bought a Nexus One the day it came out and never looked back. In his spare time he watches Star Trek, cooks eggs, and completely fails to write novels.
  • http://www.Nave360.com Sebastian Gorgon

    I wish they could just update the action bar, i don't like the design, it's like you hated the pattern on old Google Play.

  • Cory Wilson

    Please tell me this fixes the issue with 7 inch tablets. Ever since the launch of jellybean 4.1 the 7 inch tablet ui has been screwed. Gotta flip it to portrait to see suggestions. Never made much sense especially with how much nicer the old honeycomb ui was

    • Thomas Wong

      I can't agree more. But Google seems to have changed their mind about 7-inch tablets. They think that 7-inch tablets are like really big phones (like phablets?), and the additional screen real estate should be used to display more of the *content*, instead of more of the *UI elements*. So when you now view Gmail 4.5v on a Nexus 7 on landscape, you have a relaxed view of the email titles, instead of that with the menu on the left alongside like on Gmail 4.3v or before.

    • Kie

      I know this is not the ideal fix for this issue, but if you are rooted you can try out ParanoidAndroid as it will allow you to set specific apps to think you are using a bigger tablet which will then enable the tablet ui

  • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

    This new slide out feels inferior now. I'm surprised they aren't using the hamburger, though wait a minute - no, I'm not. These inconsistencies on Google’s own products happen every day.

    • http://www.facebook.com/seangt Sean Thomas

      the menu is also "under" the content and the content slides right instead of the menu over it. sigh.

    • Alvin

      youtube app had slide-out menu way before the standard comes out recently

      • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

        Yeah, it had, but I was hoping if they're updating it to work everywhere already, they might as well use the new one.

    • Nasko Hristov

      But hey, at least they updated most of their apps with the new drawer.

    • Imparus

      The animation is the same as in hangout, where you pull the content way, instead of pulling the menu bar out. So if they had used the hamburger it would have been even more inconsistent on Google side, so they will also have to change the animation, before they can use the hamburger.

    • Jeff Tycz

      The problem is that you are confusing 2 different things here so lets use the proper names for the actual views. There are 2 different "menu" styles, one is the Navigation Drawer that you see with the new "hamburger" icon instead of the arrow. The second is the SlidingPaneLayout which you see here in the youtube app.

      From the docs: "SlidingPaneLayout is distinct from a navigation drawer as described in the design guide and should not be used in the same scenarios. SlidingPaneLayout should be thought of only as a way to allow a two-pane layout normally used on larger screens to adapt to smaller screens in a natural way. The interaction patterns expressed by SlidingPaneLayout imply a physicality and direct information hierarchy between panes that does not necessarily exist in a scenario where a navigation drawer should be used instead."

      although in this case yes google does not really follow how the SlidingPaneLayout is suppose to work since they are using it as a menu essentially

    • xnifex

      Is it just me or did they get rid of the option of clicking on the channel name when viewing a subscription to see uploads, activity, playlists, & favorites? I can't seem to get that view back & now it's harder to view all the playlists since it uses those huge images instead on a grid of 2-3 columns

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii
  • Bernhard Friedreich

    Is it just a coincidence that gmail and youtube are now both at 4.5?

    • Benjamin Pavel

      Google always updated their apps according to the recent or yet to be announced Android OS version.
      My speculation isi that 4.5 is Key Lime Pie.
      And these apps were updated so they are compactible with 4.5 Android thus private beta testing (inside Google company) can begin.

      • Roh_Mish

        Ain't for 4.3 and 4.4???

      • Nasko Hristov

        Google is trolling us guys.

  • Sam

    Erm you have been able to slide out this menu for months. It certainly is not a new thing for me on my Nexus 4...

    • Herman

      I don't get it either o_O"

      • Huton Gergö

        I thing slow update again :|
        I think thats a bad marketing what google does

    • Solust

      Yeah, I'm kind of thinking this article was written in error. I'm sure there will be a version 4.6 or 5.0 with the drawer fixed.

    • Tony Sarju

      Yeah, I'm also lost about this article. This is not a new feature.

    • Jeremiah Rice

      The menu itself has been there for a while. Now it's accessible anywhere in the app. I adjusted the wording a bit to emphasize this.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      The slide out isn't new but the fact that it can be opened everywhere now, like from video pages, is.

      I'll have Jeremiah clarify this better.

    • Mughal MAB

      Even I have this in my phone... That's an old thing in YouTube

  • Ricardo Ferreira

    All I could see on the images was Vsauce!! Love those 3.. They have the most interesting channel on youtube (sure, Node/freddiew are awesome too).

  • karel

    Get your things straight Google! The little icon showing where the slide out is is still a < and not the 3 lines. Same with G+ app

  • Dario

    Does the Youtube-App uses the spdy protocol? I know that Youtube-Servers are already reachable with it. Any ideas?

    • Roh_Mish

      No standard http requests as it shows

  • http://surrenderat20.net/ frostyNinja

    The app really needs some more serious attention. It could be so much more functional, stylish and user-friendly yet I feel like Google is not really interested in giving it that much attention. They are basically like "hey, we need to have an app, just put something out there" so they don't miss out on revenue. Bums me out since I use the app basically every day.

    (I also find the app icon hideous, but that's something I'll manage to live with)

  • richie97

    To get technical, this update doesn't use the new DrawerLayout like Music/Books/etc. It uses SlidingPaneLayout, similar to Hangouts. Note how it pushes the content over, instead of sliding over top of it.

    They are two completely separate things. SlidingPane doesn't use the new ActionBarDrawerToggle (the 3 lined hamburger button), since the toggle takes a DrawerLayout, not a SlidingPaneLayout.

  • firethorn

    Now, how to get the Youtube app to default to "My subscriptions" rather than the "What to watch" list that I don't want to use, ever?

    • umataro42

      Or being able to see my inbox and comments (and reply to them) from within the app?

  • CuriousCursor

    Still no regard for Android guidelines. Come on YouTube devs.

  • Nasko Hristov

    Why they still used DAT black-grey stripes???

  • Влатко Стојанов

    There is no "new" Slide-Out Navigation Menu in YouTube 4.5.17. It's the same menu as before but now is accessible from everywhere. This isn't the new menu that we can see in Gmail 4.5.

  • http://www.twitter.com/joshuaworth Joshua Worth

    Slide out has been in YouTube for quite sometime now

    • vitriolix

      Yeah, this is not an updated UI. This doesn't follow anything in the new standard at all in fact. The content slides over instead of the drawer floating on top of the content. Doesn't use the new hamburger icon. Basically no, this is not a new UI. It's been exactly this for a long time.

  • anthonyh90

    Is it still not possible to sort your subscriptions in alphabetical order?

  • Ezzy

    It still has no support for background use (music), it still pauses a video when you get a notification(?) or when you turn off the screen, no comment up/downvoting or spam tagging, no private messaging (or notifications of them), your subscription collections down shop up on mobile at all or anything really that the web version does. What are they waiting for? Why can't this be more like G+ or integrated into it?