YouTube might be popular for its video sharing and streaming capabilities but it’s also home to tons of great music. A lot of people use YouTube for listening to their favorite music but certain limitations in the app are a hindrance in the experience. We are talking about YouTube’s inability to play videos in the background on Android. The official YouTube app does allow you to play videos in the background but there’s a catch. You need to have a YouTube Premium subscription. Unfortunately, YouTube Premium is not available in all the regions, and as the name suggests, it’s paid. So if you’re based in a country where YouTube Premium is not yet available, or if you don’t want to pay for the feature, you will need to install third party apps that let you play YouTube videos in background on Android.
Third Party Apps to Play YouTube Videos in Background on Android
1. YouTube Vanced
For those of you looking for a convenient and effective way to play YouTube videos in the background with the screen off there’s YouTube Vanced. A modified YouTube APK that includes a bunch of handy features that allow you to play YouTube videos in a pop-up window, customize the player to your liking, and of course, play videos in the background even with the screen off.
YouTube Vanced is available for non-rooted users and it’s undoubtedly the best way to watch YouTube videos in the background. While the app by itself doesn’t allow you to log into your YouTube account, you can download the MicroG Vanced APK (available from the YouTube Vanced website) if you wish to log into your account and get access to your personalized suggestions, playlists, etc.
Install YouTube Vanced (Free)
2. Free Music for YouTube: Stream
Free Music for YouTube: Stream is of the best third-party apps that allows you to play YouTube videos in the background. The app allows you to search for your favorite artists, create your own playlists, discover new music genres and browse the daily top charts, making it the perfect companion for anyone who uses YouTube as their primary music streaming service.
It features a floating pop-up player that allows you to play any YouTube videos, without requiring you to stay on the YouTube app at all times. The app also offers three widgets which will allow you to access it directly from your home screen, adding even more convenience for the average YouTube user. Additionally, the app includes a Sleep Timer feature and a Battery Saver feature, both of which also serve to enhance your experience. The app, however, doesn’t allow you to play YouTube videos with the screen off.
Install Free Music for YouTube: Stream (Free)
3. Awesome Pop-up Video
As the name suggests, Awesome Pop-up Video lets you play videos in a pop-up window. The app lets you play YouTube, Vimeo or any other videos from the web in a cool little pop-up. The homepage of the app shows you popular videos from YouTube and you can also search for videos on YouTube, Vimeo or paste a video link from the web, although videos from the likes of Twitter, Facebook aren’t supported. Once you play a video, the video opens in a popup with buttons to close it, maximize it or check playlist.
You can also add videos in the queue to keep it playing in the background. Sadly, the music from YouTube videos only play in the background till the time screen is on. Other features of the app include pop-up themes & settings, ability to download videos and more. So, if you want YouTube videos running as pop-ups while you check your email or browse the web, you can give Awesome Pop-up Video app a shot. Great as the app may be, it doesn’t allow you to play videos with the screen off, which is a bummer.
Install Awesome Pop-up Video (Free)
Note: In case you have a rooted Android smartphone you can follow our guide on How to Play YouTube Videos With Screen Off to easily play YouTube videos in the background.
If you’re willing to pay to get the functionality you desire, you can also opt for YouTube Premium, provided it’s available in your country. YouTube Premium delivers an ad-free YouTube experience with additional features like the ability to download videos for offline viewing, access to YouTube Original content, access to YouTube Music Premium and, of course, background playback.
A YouTube Premium subscription will set you back $11.99 per month, which will include ad-free music, background play, downloads, ad-free videos, and access to all YouTube Originals. In case you just want to listen to music, you can opt for the YouTube Music Premium subscription which will set you back $9.99 per month and will offer ad-free music, background play and downloads.
Note: The pricing mentioned above is for YouTube Premium subscription in the US and might vary slightly in other regions.
In case you’re a student, you can get access to special student pricing for YouTube Premium; $6.99 per month for YouTube Premium and $4.99 per month for YouTube Premium Music. Students who sign up for the service on or before January 31, 2019 can get the YouTube Premium subscription at just $5.99 per month.
Check out YouTube Premium
These apps Make YouTube Perfect for Music Streaming
While these apps are not the most user friendly options but they work well. We tested these apps and we found them to be the best when it comes to playing YouTube videos in background on Android. So, give these apps a spin and let us know your opinion. Also, tell us if you have any different methods to play YouTube videos in the background. Sound off in the comments section below.