Set YouTube to Always Play in High Quality on iPhone and Android

Uzair Ghani
Set YouTube app to stream in high quality

We will show you how you can set the YouTube app on your iPhone or Android device to play video in high quality on Wi-Fi and cellular.

Tired of Pixelated, Low Quality Video Streaming on YouTube? Set the App to Play in High Quality Every Single Time

For quite a while now, the YouTube app uses adaptive bitrate to make sure that you save as much data as possible while getting the best possible video quality, depending on your internet connection conditions. In most cases, you end up seeing a pixelated video, something that can be extremely frustrating if you're all about that 4K life.

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Thankfully, you can turn off the adaptive bitrate feature and set the YouTube app to always play the video in high quality whether you're on Wi-Fi or cellular. It's a simple option hidden away in YouTube settings, and getting to it is super easy as well.

Tutorial

Note: We will not recommend toying around with these settings at all if you have an extremely limited data or Wi-Fi plan. If you still want to go ahead with it, it's entirely your call.

Step 1. Launch the YouTube app.

Step 2. Tap on your profile image on the top right hand corner.

Step 3. Now tap on Settings.

Step 4. Now tap on Video quality preferences.

Step 5. You'll see two options here and both are set to Auto by default. If you want the YouTube app to show you higher quality video on cellular or Wi-Fi, select the Higher picture quality option.

From now on, whenever you stream a video on YouTube it will simply go ahead with the highest video quality available for streaming. Remember one thing, if you have an extremely slow internet connection, then the app might still struggle to take you beyond 1080p and you will end up seeing some buffering moments. But we're sure you knew that already.

You still have the option to force YouTube to play in the highest possible quality here. Simply tap on the video you're currently playing, then select the three dots on the top right hand corner, then tap on Quality, then Advanced and select the highest possible resolution from here.

Again, we can't emphasize on this enough - this will eat away your data at a very fast pace. If you are the sort of person who doesn't care about pixels on the display, then it's best to leave everything at automatic and let the YouTube app decide what is best for you.

Trust me when I say this, the automatic method ends up offering the best possible experience without breaking through your data allowance.

Looking for more tutorials? Make sure you head over to this section.

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