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Google announces YouTube Go a new app for offline viewing and sharing

Google has announced YouTube Go, a new app designed to broaden the accessibility of the behemoth video-sharing service. Designed and developed with Indian users in mind, who will be able to test the app first before a broader rollout, YouTube Go is intended to work more effectively in areas where connectivity is more limited.

YouTube Go allows users to save videos for offline viewing, giving options over quality and file size so it's clear how much data a download will use. The app also allows for local sharing with nearby users without using any data. YouTube Go builds upon the Smart Offline feature that YouTube launched first in India earlier this year.

YouTube Go features video previews in the form of slideshows for each clip, so can get an idea of what it’s about before you stream or save it to your device. You can also see its file size before downloading, along with how much storage space you have left on your phone.

The app builds on Google’s previous efforts to make YouTube more easily accessible to people in areas with slow connections and expensive data. Two years ago, it enabled offline playback on the platform for Android users; in June, it announced Smart Offline, a feature that automatically downloads selected videos during time slots when data is cheaper or free on your mobile network.

YouTube Go will become available to test soon; the company hasn’t announced an official date, but users in India can sign up on this page to be notified when it arrives.