Twitter is testing watching YouTube videos in the timeline without leaving the iOS app

Twitter has kicked off a new test with a small selection of its user base which, if successful, would let you watch YouTube videos in-line, without leaving the company’s official iOS app.


  • Watch YouTube videos in your Twitter timeline.
  • Tapping a video URL no longer takes you to
  • Despite a much better experience, Twitter could nix the feature.

YouTube videos in your timeline

“Starting today on iOS, we’re testing a way to watch YouTube videos directly in your Home timeline, without leaving the conversation on Twitter,” the company announced on Twitter.

People who are included in Twitter’s new test on iOS should now be able to hit a preview of the YouTube link in their timeline to start watching the video in-line like they would native Twitter videos. Currently, people don’t see YouTube video previews in their timeline unless they hit a tweet and the experience of watching the embedded video leaves a lot to be desired.

You have probably noticed this yourself in Twitter’s iPhone and iPad app—you must first touch a tweet to reveal the underlying video preview link, but tapping that link opens the video in the mobile YouTube website within the Twitter app. Sure, you can hit the banner at the top labeled “Open YouTube” to send the URL to the native YouTube app, but that’s way too many steps for something as simple as watching a YouTube video in your timeline.

With this test, such a convoluted experience could become a thing of the past.

The company didn’t say when it could release this useful feature to all of its users. As with all features in testing, this one could be ultimately canceled should the test prove unsuccessful.

What else is Twitter experimenting with?

Twitter is conducting several experiments as we speak that could eventually become new user features, including full-size image previews in the timeline and an Undo Send timer for tweets.

How to customize notifications on Twitter

As for Twitter-owned TweetDeck, a “big overhaul” is in the works, according to the company. Twitter is also working on a Tip Jar for its Spaces feature to allow people to support their favorite content creators on the platform with donations, as discovered by 9to5Mac.