February 6, 2023

YouTube is more than just uploading and watching videos. It has several neat and useful little-known features that can make your viewing experience more interesting and enjoyable.

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Let’s get started with these powerful tips.

youtube on laptop
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1. Set a reminder to take a break

It’s easy to find yourself down a viewing rabbit hole on YouTube because their algorithm has a way of tricking you into starting another video as soon as you’re done or even while you’re watching the current one. However, there is a little-known YouTube feature that can help you stop browsing content.

  • Open youtube app on your phone
  • tap your avatar or icon – in the upper right corner of the screen
  • Open set up
  • tap General
YouTube break

YouTube break
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  • Open Remind me to take a break – Toggle by clicking or right
  • Then reminder frequency A window will pop up – you can set the desired hours and minutes and click OK at the bottom right of the popup
YouTube break

YouTube break
(Cyberguy.com)

You can also set a reminder to stop watching videos at bedtime by:

  • Click or toggle right bedtime remind me
  • set bedtime Starting time and time’s up in the popup window
  • then click OK at the bottom right
Set your YouTube bedtime

Set your YouTube bedtime
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2. Check your watch time

There’s also a way to see how much time you’re spending on YouTube, which can help you decide if you need more control over your time:

  • Open youtube app on your phone
  • tap your avatar or icon (make sure you are logged in)
  • tap watch time
  • Time spent watching videos on YouTube is graphed for today and the last 7 days
Monitor how much time you watch on YouTube

Monitor how much time you watch on YouTube
(Cyberguy.com)

The watch time section also gives you shortcuts for setting break and bedtime reminders. Note that watch time does not include any time spent watching videos on YouTube Music or YouTube TV.

3. Create a link to start a YouTube video at a specific time

  • There’s a nifty trick to link to a specific time in a YouTube video, which will display a specific segment of the video. This is handy, especially if your video is long and the part you want to share appears a few minutes after it started playing. It’s easy to link to the exact part of any YouTube video by following these instructions.
  • Open youtube in your web browser
  • click on your selected video
  • click share To the right of the title directly below the video

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youtube google search

youtube google search
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  • In the popup that opens, click the box next to start at
  • input time when you want the video to start
clip your youtube

clip your youtube
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To save a step or two, you can also pause the video where you want it to start and the timecode will fill in automatically.

clip youtube link

clip youtube link
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4. Pause search and watch history

  • If you’re signed into YouTube, it will use your viewing and search history to choose the videos it recommends on your home page. So if friends or family members watch videos under your account, you may find that your home page is full of videos that you have zero interest in watching. However, there is a way to pause your search history and clear those videos from your homepage, at least temporarily.
  • Open youtube app on your phone
  • tap your avatar or icon
  • Open set up
  • tap History and Privacy
  • Open pause watch history and pause search historyBy clicking on both or toggle right
YouTube autoplay

YouTube autoplay
(Cyberguy.com)

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It’s also useful if you might want to hide your search and viewing history from friends or family.Another option is Turn on incognito mode which will fill your home screen with random videos.

  • Open youtube app on your phone
  • tap your avatar or icon
  • tap turn on stealth
watch youtube video

watch youtube video
(Cyberguy.com)

One thing to keep in mind about incognito mode is that all videos will contain ads, even if you are a premium subscriber.

5. Disable Autoplay

Another thing that makes watching videos on YouTube so hard to stop is that shortly after you finish watching one video, another automatically starts playing. This is because autoplay is enabled by default for viewers 18 and older. However, this can easily be changed.

  • Open youtube app on your phone
  • click on your avataror icon
  • Open set up
  • tap Autoplay
  • Turn off autoplay by clicking or toggling rightMobile/Tablet
YouTube break

YouTube break
(Cyberguy.com)

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Unfortunately, this only disables autoplay when watching YouTube on your smartphone or tablet.

YouTube features

YouTube features
(Cyberguy.com)

YouTube is a great way to discover and learn new things. By following these five steps, you can rest assured that it’s safe and sound, not a habit you need to break.

Which of these features would be most helpful to you? let us know. We’d love to hear from you.



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