There’s so much to watch on YouTube, you can’t possibly watch it all.

And it’s always the same story: you’ve spent twice as long as you intended to sitting there watch mindless YouTube videos when you find one you know you’re gonna love, but if you don’t get moving now, you’re gonna be late and get fired. But when you come back later you can’t remember what that video was! Then the only time you can watch it is on this stupid Wi-Fi-less flight. And thus a video you could’ve loved is lost to time…

Never again. We can save them! We have the technology.

How to add a YouTube video to Watch Later

Watch later is the playlist that every YouTuber has but not every YouTuber uses. Remember that annoying little plus that used to pop up in the bottom corner of every video thumbnail you moused over on the YouTube website? That was an Add to Watch Later button. Watch later can be a carefully curated playlist of unseen and interesting videos… or it can be a dumping ground for videos you mean to watch when you get home from work but forget to watch for a few months. No matter how you use it, here’s how to add videos to it.

  1. Launch the YouTube app from your Home screen or the app drawer.
  2. Search for a video you want to watch later.
  3. Tap the three dots to the right under a video’s title.
  4. Tap Add to Watch later.

If you’re already watching a video and want to save it for later, it’s even easier.

  1. Tap Add to in the video listing.
  2. Tap Watch later.

    I'll finish you later

How to save a video to play offline

Downloading YouTube videos to watch offline can save you oodles of data if you have the presence of mind to download while you’re on good Wi-Fi, and in areas where data connections can be spotty as best, offline might be the only real way to watch YouTube. If you live in India or 15 other countries, congratulations! You can save videos for offline viewing without a subscription.

If you live in the United States or four other countries where YouTube Red is available, then if you subscribe to the service, you can save videos for offline viewing in YouTube. If your country is outside these two circles, I’m sorry, but the official YouTube app won’t let you download videos for easy offline playback.

Should you be lucky enough to have the option of saving YouTube videos for offline viewing, here’s how it works.

  1. Launch the YouTube app from your home screen or the app drawer.
  2. Tap on a video you want to save for offline viewing.
  3. Tap Save, which should sit between the Share and Add to buttons below the video’s title.

    Find a video

  4. Tap the ** video quality** you wish to save your video in.
  5. Tap OK.

    Saved

Depending on the settings you’ve set for offline saves, YouTube will automatically begin downloading the video or wait for Wi-Fi to begin downloading.

How to save a playlist to play offline

If you’ve got an entire playlist you want to watch offline, you can save that playlist without having to individually download every single video.

  1. Launch the YouTube app from your home screen or the app drawer.
  2. Tap Library.
  3. Tap on a playlist you want to save for offline viewing.

    Find a playlist

  4. Tap Download, the icon directly below the playlist name.
  5. Tap the quality you wish to save your video in.
  6. Tap OK.
  7. Tap OK on the pop-up that says downloading a playlist can take a lot of time and data.

    Save a playlist

How to schedule offline downloading for Wi-Fi

Not everyone can afford unlimited data plans, so if you want to save videos for offline viewing so that you don’t spend precious mobile data, YouTube can wait to download that video until you’re off paid data and onto Wi-Fi.

  1. Launch the YouTube app.
  2. Tap your avatar in the top right corner.
  3. Tap Settings.

    Into Settings

  4. Tap Background & offline.
  5. Under Save offline, tap Add over Wi-Fi only. Once activated, the toggle should turn blue.

    Wi-Fi only

How to schedule save offline downloads for overnight (India Only)

India has another extra special feature for YouTube, only available to users of select mobile operators: Smart Offline. It allows users to select videos they want to download, and then have them download overnight when data is cheaper.

  1. Launch the YouTube app.
  2. Tap on a video you want to save for offline viewing.
  3. Tap Save, which should sit between the Share and Add to buttons below the video’s title.

    Save me

  4. Tap the quality you wish to save your video in.
  5. Tap Save overnight.
  6. Tap OK.

    See you in the morning

If you’re using Smart Offline, your videos will also automatically download if you connect to Wi-Fi in another bid to save you precious mobile data.

Questions?

Let us know in the comments below.



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