How to Fix YouTube Picture-in-Picture Not Working on Android?

YouTube Picture-in-Picture may not work due to various reasons including gesture controls, geographic restrictions, or use of 3rd party launchers. Some users have reported that while Picture-in-Picture (PiP) worked, it lacked controls such as pause or audio adjustments. Additionally, the PiP option in YouTube’s settings may sometimes be disabled unexpectedly.

YouTube Picture in Picture

Before we delve into solutions to fix the PiP issue on YouTube, it’s important to know that PiP mode is available to both YouTube Premium subscribers and non-subscribers on Android phones, with certain limitations for non-premium users, such as it being ad-supported and not available for music content. Additionally, ensure that your geographical region supports this feature and you’re not trying to use it on copyright-restricted videos.

Solution 1: Restart Your Phone

PiP issues could stem from temporary communication or application glitches within your phone. Restarting the device can often clear these glitches:

  1. Press the power button until the power menu appears, then tap Power off.
  2. Wait for your phone to shut down completely before turning it back on.
  3. After the restart, check whether the YouTube PiP feature is functioning correctly.

Solution 2: Enable Picture in Picture Feature in YouTube and Phone’s Settings

For YouTube’s PiP mode to function correctly, ensure it’s enabled in both YouTube’s settings and your phone’s settings:

  1. Open your phone’s Settings and go to the Application Manager or Apps.
    Open Apps of Your Phone
  2. Tap on the More button and select Configure Apps.
    Open Configure Apps Menu
  3. Select Special Access and then Picture-in-Picture.
    Open Settings of Special Access Applications
  4. Toggle the switch to enable PiP for YouTube.
    Allow Picture in Picture in Your Phone’s Settings for YouTube
  5. Open the YouTube app and tap on your user profile icon.
  6. Go to Settings and select General.
  7. Toggle the switch to enable PiP and verify that the issue is resolved.
    Enable Picture in Picture Feature in YouTube
  8. If not, play a video, swipe down to access the notifications tray, tap on Settings, and check if PiP is now working properly.

Solution 3: Switch to Another YouTube Account

A temporary glitch with your YouTube account can also cause PiP problems. Switching to another account may resolve this:

  1. Open the YouTube app and tap on the user profile icon.
  2. Select Switch Account and choose a different account, or add one if necessary.
    Switch Account in the YouTube Application
  3. Relaunch the app to see if the PiP function is working correctly.

Solution 4: Play the Video in Landscape Mode in YouTube

YouTube’s PiP mode was primarily designed for landscape mode. If you’re trying to activate it in portrait orientation, consider switching to landscape mode:

  1. Open YouTube and start playing a video.
  2. Keep the video in portrait mode, press the Home button to activate PiP, and check if it’s functioning correctly.

Solution 5: Disable Gesture Controls (or Use 3 Button Navigation) on Your Phone

PiP is typically activated by pressing the home button while a video is playing. If your phone uses gesture controls without a home button, disabling gestures or using button navigation might help:

  1. Go to your phone’s Settings and select System.
  2. Choose Gestures and then select System Navigation.
    Open Gestures Settings
  3. Activate the 3-Button Navigation option and check if the PiP issue is resolved.
    Enable 3-button Navigation
  4. If not, try tapping the bottom right corner of the screen, where the PiP window usually appears, to see if this resolves the issue.
    Tap on the Bottom Right of Your Screen
  5. Alternatively, launch the video and quickly tap on the back button several times to see if this brings up the PiP screen.

Solution 6: Revert to the Stock Launcher of Your Phone

Third-party launchers may interfere with PiP and other features. Reverting to your phone’s stock launcher may resolve these issues:

  1. Open your phone’s Settings, go to Application Manager or Apps.
  2. Choose More and then select Configure Apps.
  3. In the default section, select Home App and change it to the stock launcher.
  4. Restart your phone and check if the PiP issue is resolved.

Solution 7: Update the YouTube Application to the Latest Build

Regular updates to the YouTube app include new features and bug fixes. If you’re using an outdated version of the app, updating to the latest build may solve PiP issues:

  1. Open the Google Play Store and access the menu by tapping on the hamburger icon.
  2. Select My Apps & Games and navigate to the Installed tab.
  3. Find YouTube and tap on the Update button if an update is available.
    Updating the YouTube App
  4. After the update, test to see if YouTube’s PiP feature is now working.
  5. If not, try playing a video and using the split-screen feature, then bring YouTube back to full screen to check if operations have normalized.

Solution 8: Clear the Cache of the YouTube Application

The YouTube app’s cache can enhance performance, but if it becomes corrupted, it may cause issues. Clearing the app’s cache could resolve this:

  1. Exit the YouTube app and open your phone’s Settings.
  2. Enter Application Manager or Apps and select YouTube.
    Accessing the YouTube app
  3. Tap on Force Stop, confirm the action, then access the Storage settings.
    Force Stop the YouTube Application and Open Its Storage Settings
  4. Press Clear Cache and see if the app functions properly.
    Clear Cache and Data of the YouTube Application
  5. If the issue persists, repeat steps 1 to 5, and in the Storage settings, tap on Clear Data.
  6. Confirm to delete the data, which may require you to re-enter your credentials, and check if the YouTube PiP functionality is restored.
  7. If the problem remains, play a video and tap on the Share icon. Without sharing the video, go back to the video and see if PiP mode returns.

Solution 9: Use the Chrome Browser on Your Phone

If none of the above solutions have worked, you can try using the Chrome browser on your phone to utilize PiP with YouTube:

  1. Enable the PiP option in your phone’s settings for Chrome, akin to the steps described in Solution 2 for the YouTube app.
  2. Launch Chrome on your phone and search for YouTube via the search bar.
  3. Tap on the 3 vertical dots to open the menu and check the Desktop Site option.
    Open the YouTube Desktop Site in Another Tab
  4. Long-press the first search result for YouTube and select Open in New Tab.
  5. Switch to this tab and make sure it’s in Desktop Site mode.
  6. Play a video and check if the PiP functionality is available through the browser.

If these solutions do not resolve your issue, consider using YouTube on a different device or a third-party app that supports YouTube PiP functionality.


Kevin Arrows

Kevin Arrows is a highly experienced and knowledgeable technology specialist with over a decade of industry experience. He holds a Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS) certification and has a deep passion for staying up-to-date on the latest tech developments. Kevin has written extensively on a wide range of tech-related topics, showcasing his expertise and knowledge in areas such as software development, cybersecurity, and cloud computing. His contributions to the tech field have been widely recognized and respected by his peers, and he is highly regarded for his ability to explain complex technical concepts in a clear and concise manner.