YouTube is kicking off Google's plans to help users balance technology and life. At Google IO 2018, the search giant had announced a Wellbeing initiative to help users understand their digital habits and curb device addiction. Video streaming platform YouTube is also a part of the initiative, under which users will be able to schedule custom breaks to step away from their online lives for a while. Notably, a new version of the YouTube for Android app is now rolling out with a new 'Take a Break' feature in keeping with this theme.
The YouTube Take a Break feature is available on the mobile app Setting screen. Users can set a reminder to appear every 15, 30, 60, 90, or 180 minutes. Once a user selects an option, YouTube will pause the videos at those intervals. The user can then choose either to dismiss the reminder to continue watching or close the app. Notably, the setting is optional and switched off by default.
Additionally, there are two more features in the new YouTube notifications menu. One of the options called 'Disable sounds & vibrations' will let you disable all notification sounds from the YouTube for Android app for a particular amount of time. The other new feature is called 'Scheduled Digest' that lets users get all of their notification once a day at a particular time.
The Take a Break and other notification features are available in the latest version (13.17.55) of the YouTube app. The Take a Break feature can be accessed by going to Settings > General, and the notifications feature is available at Settings > Notifications.
These features will not be the last ones from Google that have been designed to help users get less distracted because of technology. With Android P, Google is planning to unveil a lot of new feature under the Digital Wellbeing initiative.