The YouTube app for Android now has an Incognito Mode that enables users to view content without videos being added to their viewing and search history.
The new feature, which began testing in May, is officially being rolled out to all users via the Google Play store. iOS app users will have to wait, it seems.
Adding the extra layer of privacy allows YouTube users to watch whatever they like without the risk of those clips appearing in the history on shared devices, like a Smart TV where they may be logged into a YouTube account for example.
Within the updated app users will see a “Turn on Incognito” button in place of the Sign Out button when they tap their avatar. Once the feature is enabled, YouTube users will see a “you’ve gone incognito” message (via 9to5Google).
It means users won’t have to sign out of the app every time they want to watch something that they wouldn’t want to be public or family knowledge. For example, if you’re planning a present or a surprise, you may not want the evidence viewable. Likewise, if you’ve delved a little too deeply into one of YouTube’s strange rabbit holes, you’re unlikely to want to face questions about that viewing session.
With Incognito Mode comes some caveats. You won’t be able to access your Inbox, Library or Subscriptions pages unless you turn the mode off. Unfortunately, the new mode doesn’t enable complete anonymity. Google reminds users that their school, employer and internet service provider can still see the activities.
The update is available from Google Play now if you want to take the new feature for a spin. There’s no news yet on if and when Google will bring the feature to the iPhone app.