[Update: Official] YouTube for Android TV gains a new animated loading screen with startup sound

YouTube for Android TV now receives a new startup or loading screen when launching the app from cold mode.

Google has quietly made a number of changes to YouTube on Android TV over the past few months, with the latest notable update being the inclusion of more material it wants to add to its main video player offering. The latest such change involves the initial rollout of the video-sharing platform.


[Update]: In a dedicated blog post, YouTube has provided details of the new launch animation for Android TV and Smart TVs. The animation also includes a unique startup sound that is sometimes played when the app is opened after a long time.

The initial idea behind the audio was to have something vibrant, engaging, and easily recognizable, so that you know as soon as you hear it—even if you step away from your TV or device—that something is about to hit YouTube.

The new sound consisted of a “deep diving” note followed by an ascending “glissando” that imparts a “joyful, upbeat feel” according to YouTube. There is also a 2-note melodic “phrase” that is said to echo the “two syllables” in the name “YouTube” with an opening style sound and a synth note that ends the 3-second animation.

As for the animation itself, YouTube says it was inspired by old CRT TVs when they played and combined with the classic playhead and timeline. It’s an interesting interpretation of something that will undoubtedly become synonymous with YouTube on Android TV and smart TVs for a long time to come. Check out the full version with audio below:


We spotted this change on the Nvidia Shield TV Pro, but it’s unclear how widespread this change will be. Many Chromecast devices with Google TV have not seen the change yet and are still showing the old loading screen even though they are running the latest YouTube for Android TV 3.01.005. Furthermore, all tested devices have the same accounts that are logged in. And while it’s not clear, it seems likely that this is part of a server-side rollout in this case rather than the release it’s associated with.

When YouTube loads on your Android TV after a period of sluggishness or when the app decides to update itself, you’ll see a new loading bar icon consisting of the familiar YouTube play header and a red progress bar. This gives way to an animated YouTube logo that slides out with the aforementioned playhead that transforms into the iconic play button.

It is definitely more attractive and dynamic than the previous loading fee when you open YouTube on your Android TV set top box. Even with the flashy animations, it still takes the same amount of time to get to your home feed. It’s a nice touch with every breath. You can see a comparison of the differences below:

We expect this little acknowledged change to spread more widely over the coming days. Let us know if you see the new loading screen when you play YouTube on Android TV or Google TV in the comments section below.

More on Android TV:

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