Google has updated its YouTube mobile application with an animated loading screen, previously seen on Android TV in late 2022. The tech giant announced that the new animation is part of its identity update, designed to be more engaging and easily recognizable. This change marks another step towards providing a consistent experience across all platforms for YouTube users.
The new loading screen features a loading bar icon with the classic YouTube play-head and a red progress bar. The play button icon then pops into view while the actual play icon slides in to complete the iconic YouTube logo. Interestingly, the word “YouTube” does not appear in text form alongside the logo, but the design still remains easily recognizable to users.
Compared to the Android TV counterpart, the mobile version of the animated loading screen does not have an accompanying startup sound. This minor difference was made to adjust the animation to the mobile user experience, where every second counts. The new animation only appears if the user has not used the YouTube application for a long period or if they have recently updated.
At present, the loading screen is not available on iPhone and iOS devices. It is unclear if this will change in the future, as the restrictions on app opening animations are likely different on the iOS platform. However, the new animation is already being seen on multiple Android-powered devices with the latest v18.16.33 build, although this is likely part of a server-side rollout. Users can expect to see it expand over the coming days and weeks.