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Say Goodbye To Ads—YouTube Red Is Live

Today is the big day. Open YouTube on your platform of choice and you might notice a new logo for YouTube Red. Google's ad-free version of YouTube appears to have just gone live for eligible subscribers. Never again will you be asked to sit through a 15-second pre-roll ad for a 30 second video or click to hide that stupid banner. What a glorious day this is.

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Editorial: YouTube Red Is A Fantastic Idea, Please Ignore People On The Internet Who Hate Paying For Good Things

YouTube Red is a damn good idea, and I'm not even going to qualify that statement. You know why it's a damn good idea? Because YouTube needs to grow up, and step one is getting rid of those garbage advertisements we all love to hate so much. Step two is convincing average, rational human beings that maybe, possibly, they could see themselves in a world in which they might actually pay to more conveniently watch the things and people they really, really, really like to watch.

At the moment, and probably for a while yet, basically all of YouTube's revenue comes from advertisements.

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Ad-Free 'YouTube Red' Launching In The US On October 28th For $9.99 With Free Play Music Subscription [Update]

The day we've been waiting for is finally here—the ad-free YouTube Red service is a reality. Well, technically it will be a reality in a week on October 28th (close to the date we had before), but we've got all the details now. For $9.99 per month you'll never see another ad on YouTube, and it includes a number of other cool perks.

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YouTube Gaming v1.1 Promises Background & Offline Playback, Cardboard Support, And Battletoads [APK Teardown]

Not everybody is into live streaming gameplay, but for those that are, and particularly those that play a lot of games on Android, this week's update for YouTube Gaming was a pretty big deal. It brought much-needed support for recording and live broadcasting your screen directly to YouTube. While the update is significant for the features we now have, it also happens to include some signs for a few more things we can expect in the future. We can see a few of YouTube's newer features are going to hop over to the gaming side, including background playback, offline playback, and even Cardboard support.

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[Update: Changelog Posted] YouTube Gaming v1.1 Adds Live Screencasting To Android Devices, Watch Later, And Easy Import For Game Subscriptions [APK Download]

Google wants to be the undisputed leader in live streaming video games. With the announcement of YouTube Gaming, Google declared its intention to do battle with Twitch over an industry that may eventually amass a mind-blowing number of viewers.

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Some Users Are Seeing A Pull To Refresh Animation In The YouTube App For Android

Check the YouTube app on your phone or tablet, user interface aficionados - you might spot something new. Like the other official Google apps have been doing for a while (quite a while), YouTube is getting a pull-to-refresh animation for relevant pages. It doesn't seem to be tied to any particular version of the app or of Android, and in fact we've only seen it active from one reader so far, so it seems like it might be a server-side switch.

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The animation allows users to scroll up to the top border of the interface and beyond on the Home tab, channel pages, subscription pages, and more, with the familiar circular arrow icon indicating a refresh.

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Google Improves The Quality Of YouTube's Automatically Generated Video Thumbnails

It's easy not to think about just how much thought and computing goes into everything that Google does, but one of YouTube's latest changes reminds us of precisely that.

Every video on the site has a thumbnail that's supposed to offer you a glimpse into what you're about to watch. A bad image will discourage you from clicking. Good ones lead to more views and greater revenue. So naturally both content creators and Google would prefer to have better thumbnails.

Using deep neural networks, the YouTube team has launched an improved "thumbnailer." Every frame in a video gets evaluated by a quality model and is assigned a quality score.

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YouTube Creator Studio v1.4 Tidies Up Its Look And Adds A Bunch Of New Analytics

Here's a little secret about people who run YouTube channels: a lot of them are obsessed with analytics. There's just something about having numbers that compels them to track, analyze, and obsess over every detail. This is the one thing they definitely have in common with website operators and certain types of sports fans. If you happen to be among this crowd, you're probably going to love the latest update to YouTube Creator Studio. It is now absolutely packed with new analytics about your channels, individual videos, audience, earnings, and more. Along the way, it also saw a little bit of restyling to clean up the interface and make it just a little more consistent and easier to read.

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[Update: More Videos] Google Appears To Be Testing Major Interface Changes In The YouTube Android App That Affect How You Browse And View Videos

Some major changes for the YouTube Android app appear to be coming down the pipeline. Several readers have reached out to us with screenshots and video documenting substantial tweaks they noticed when firing up the app.

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YouTube's Completely Ad-Free Subscription Likely To Launch October 22nd With The Name YouTube Red

We all know YouTube has been planning to launch a completely ad-free subscription, but the details have been sorely lacking on things like how much it will cost, what will be included, and when it will launch. There may finally be some answers in a report by Recode that points to October 22nd as a probable launch date. The subscription is expected to run for $10 / month and would completely remove all paid advertising from YouTube and include the current benefits of Google Play Music Unlimited.

Rumors about a premium service option have circulated for years, particularly after the first report of a music-focused streaming subscription surfaced, which ultimately became YouTube Music Key.

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