YouTube Adds Visual Content, Test Brings Google Search Formats Into The Platform

YouTube is experimenting with a feature that brings into its search results some website links and other formats from Google Search. The test is running on mobile devices in India and Indonesia, but additional countries may be added to the roaster based on user feedback. 

There were other changes related to search announced with the test, all relevant to finding content. The first is to make the search page “more visual” by giving the person searching for content a better glimpse, or snippet, into the video before opening to view it.

“We know viewers need to easily find the videos they’re looking for, and quickly access the information they need,” Neal Mohan, chief product officer at YouTube, wrote in a blog post. ”Our teams have invested significantly in improving that search experience over the years, and in today’s installment of our Innovation Series, we’re excited to share the latest technology to help you find what you’re looking for, from how-tos to DIYs.”

Until now, when someone browsed for a video to watch on YouTube, they would see a thumbnail image of each video. And while it gave them an opportunity to get a quick snapshot of the video’s content, it may not have provided enough context around the topic.

YouTube now will add video chapters directly in the search page to give people an opportunity to view the content before watching the video. The time-stamped images, when available, will detail the different topics covered in videos, and also allow the viewer to navigate directly to a specific section of interest. 

One example provided points to a recipe for sourdough bread. The viewer may know the ingredients of the bread, but not the technique needed in order to knead it.

YouTube will also roll out a mobile version.

YouTube also will begin to surface search results from other languages and automatically translate the captions, titles and descriptions. This means someone in Thailand can learn about quantum physics from a professor at MIT, or viewers in Brazil can explore the Grand Canyon from home, with captions in their local language.

The idea here is to supplement each search result with English videos with the plan to expand to more languages. In this way, global content can become more accessible through translated captions and help creators reach a larger audience. 


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