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What is Ambient Mode on YouTube?

by | Oct 24, 2023

If you spend a lot of time watching YouTube videos, there’s a helpful feature called “Ambient mode” that can make your viewing experience better on your phone or computer. This feature lets you watch videos in a more engaging and enjoyable way. Here’s a step-by-step guide to using YouTube’s Ambient mode to help you begin.

What Is Ambient Mode on YouTube?

Ambient mode is a cool feature on YouTube that adds gradient colors to your screen while you’re watching videos. It takes the colors from the video and makes them blend into the background. It looks like the colors from the video are spilling out into the area around the video player.

The special thing about YouTube’s Ambient mode is that it changes the background color to match what’s happening in the video. This makes your watching experience even more interesting. But there’s a catch – it only works when you have dark mode turned on.

So, to use this feature, first, switch to dark mode in YouTube. Then, check if you have the latest version of the YouTube app on your phone. If you don’t see the option, you might need to update the app. Also read How to Watch YouTube TV on Multiple TVs.

How to Use Ambient Mode on YouTube (Mobile)

Turning on dark mode on YouTube will also turn on Ambient mode. But if you don’t like it, you can turn it off. Here’s how:

  • Start by tapping on any video to play it.
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How to Use Ambient Mode on YouTube (Mobile)
  • Touch the screen to bring up the control options.
How to Use Ambient Mode on YouTube (Mobile)
  • In the top right corner, there’s a little icon that looks like settings. Tap on it, and a small menu will appear.
  • In that menu, tap on Ambient mode to turn the feature off. A message will pop up, saying “Ambient mode is off” to confirm that it’s disabled.
How to Use Ambient Mode on YouTube (Mobile)

If you want to turn Ambient mode back on, just follow these steps again.

One thing to keep in mind is that Ambient mode doesn’t work for videos you download to watch offline. So, if you download a video and play it, you won’t even see the Ambient mode option in the settings menu.

How to Use Ambient Mode on YouTube (Desktop)

On YouTube’s website for computers, you can also use Ambient mode. Just like on mobile, you need to turn on dark mode, and that will turn on Ambient mode as well.

Now, if you want to turn off Ambient mode on YouTube’s desktop site, here’s what to do:

  • Start by playing any YouTube video you like. Move your mouse over the video player, and you’ll see some control options.
How to Use Ambient Mode on YouTube (Desktop)
  • Look for the little settings icon in the bottom right of the video player.
How to Use Ambient Mode on YouTube (Desktop)
  • Click on “Ambient mode” in the pop-up menu. This will turn off the feature, and the video player’s background won’t have those colorful gradients anymore. From then on, Ambient mode will be off for all YouTube videos.

There’s one thing to remember about Ambient mode on the YouTube desktop site. Right now, YouTube’s “Theatre mode” on desktop doesn’t support Ambient mode. So, you need to use the “Default view” for the special effects to work. You can switch back to the Default view by moving your mouse over a playing video and clicking the white rectangle box icon in the bottom right. If Ambient mode is turned on, you’ll see those colorful gradients right away.

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In conclusion, Ambient Mode on YouTube is a fantastic feature that adds a touch of color and excitement to your video-watching experience. Whether you’re on your mobile device or desktop, it’s easy to use and can make your viewing time more engaging.

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