YouTube Loses a Little 'You,' Adds Some 'Tube'

YouTube has redesigned its user interface, removing the "social" tools from the site to make it easier for people to view consumer-generated videos on the "big screen." No, not gigantic theatrical screens, but home televisions that connect to devices with a Web browser, such as a PC, Sony PlayStation 3 or Nintendo Wii.

YouTube XL moves user-generated content into your living room. The latest feature aims to enhance viewing in high definition (HD), when available, on any large screen. Backend technology pulls the clips uploaded by users from a unique content stream, filtering out "commercially produced" videos from partners such as Warner Bros. For now, Google will not integrate AdSense for Video with Content ID, which allows media companies on YouTube.com to generate revenue from copyrighted video content that users create and upload to YouTube.

While it's a departure from YouTube's social-network viral strategy, YouTube Senior Product Manager Kuan Yong says "there are a few issues we'll need to work through, but it's important to note that YouTube.com/xl is just a Web site, so all the ads that run on the classic site can be adapted to run on xl."

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Kuan says when the site has enough "playbacks" YouTube will take monetization into account.

The site's search engine allows people to discover clips on a topic and then set the videos to watch in sequential play. Getting from one video to the next takes a few clicks -- users can control the videos with a Bluetooth-enabled remote control, and some mobile phones.

Android phone's keyboard also works as the mechanism to type in the search query and the touchscreen functions as a track pad. The phone connects to the computer through a third-party application that makes the phone the extension by communicating with the computer to control video play.

YouTube XL was launched following the introduction of the Hulu Desktop, which also aims to give people a TV-like experience. The major enhancement to the earlier launch, YouTube for TV beta, was released in January by Google.

YouTube TV

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