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YouTube tests video downloads for your desktop browser

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YouTube Premium members can test the feature for a limited time

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

YouTube is testing an official way to download videos on your desktop web browser (via Android Police). If you want to see if you’re eligible for the test, which runs through October 19th, check out YouTube’s experimental features page, which lists tests available for Premium subscribers. I was able to opt in to the test, but a colleague of mine wasn’t, which seems to indicate that not everyone is able to try the feature just yet.

If you’re opted-in and on a supported browser (“the latest versions of Chrome, Edge, or Opera,” according to Google), when you’re watching a video, you should see an option to download the video under the player. When you click it, YouTube will download the video, which you can then watch from the Downloads section that’s accessible from the hamburger menu on the left side of the screen. I can’t find a way to download videos and watch them outside of my browser — this seems to be more of a way to watch YouTube videos offline.

Here’s what the Downloads section looks like.

Be warned that the feature might be a little buggy. Shortly after I first opted in, videos didn’t download; their progress would hang at zero percent. But when I tried again a few minutes later, the feature worked as expected.