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Listen to Youtube in the background on the iPhone

Listen to Youtube in the background on the iPhone

By Giacomo Martiradonna Friday 17 April 2020

The Youtube app does not allow you to listen to music if the screen is turned off or you use other apps. But a trick is enough to circumvent these ridiculous restrictions.

Hearing Youtube with the screen off | Background playback

Unlike music streaming services that also play in the background, Youtube blocks playback as soon as you turn off the screen or switch apps; this is an annoying setback that has no technical motivation: it only serves to convince you to subscribe one of the paid plans of Mountain View, viz YouTube Premium or YouTube Music, costing respectively 11.99 / month and 9.99 / month.

In reality, however, there is a trick that allows you to bypass these restrictions, and continue listening to all the music you want, even if the iPhone display turned off. Here's how to do it.

Listen to Youtube with the screen off on iPhoneOpen the video you are interested in Safari, after which:

  • Touch the button aa in the Safari address bar. The dedicated Vista Reader options will open
  • Select Request Desktop site
  • Once the page is reloaded, press Play and exit Safari
  • Swipe down (left side) down to open the Control Center and select Play from there

The audio will start flowing again, as long as you don't block it. And if you are on iPad, even simpler, because iPadOS default charge the Desktop version of websites. Simple and painless.