There’s been a lot going on at YouTube lately. Between hiding comments by default on Android, finally arriving on Amazon Fire TV, and YouTube TV getting a new UI, it’s safe to say that the company has been busy. Despite working heavily on their newer platforms, YouTube hasn’t neglected its core Android app. The latest feature to roll off the conveyor belt is topic filters.
Appearing across the top of your screen, pill-shaped icons allow you to filter the videos that appear on your home page by topic. The topics that appear seem to be based on your watch history. You can scroll across the topics carousel-style, with your most popular topics appearing first. Google first announced this feature last month, but it’s finally widely rolling out.
The feature will undoubtedly be a welcome addition for those who are sick of YouTube’s recommendation algorithms. It could be especially useful, for example, for someone who has just discovered a new hobby and wants to learn as much as they can about it. Filtering videos according to this new hobby could easily allow them to access a range of videos on the subject, without being limited by needing to search for the correct topic.
It’s a nice change, one that signals that perhaps YouTube is finally starting to recognize that users want to have control over what they see and/or what is recommended to them. We’ve seen content filters on YouTube before in their “Up Next” section, allowing users to filter autoplay videos by relation to video, recommended for you, and so on.
The feature is rolling out worldwide at the time of writing. We’ve confirmed with our own writers that it’s rolling out in both EU and NA, to both Premium and non-Premium users. Some have had it for longer than others, so don’t be too disappointed if you don’t see the feature just yet, it’s more than likely on the way.
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