YouTube now autoplays video w/ sound when browsing on Fire TV & Android TV — Here’s how to disable it

The YouTube app on Fire TV and Android TV devices has started rolling out an, in my opinion, annoying feature where it autoplays videos, with sound, as you browse around. By default, if you highlight a video on the home or subscription feed, the video begins to play within the thumbnail at full volume. Selecting the video at that point will make it full screen at the point where the autoplaying preview has reached. This appears to be slowly rolling out, since the new behavior is not yet available on all devices. Thankfully, it’s easy to disable the feature and return to the previous behavior of silent looping previews. Just go into the YouTube app’s Settings tab, found at the bottom of the sidebar, and turn off the “Previews with sound” option.

  1. Ujn Hunter says:

    Thankfully while I got a notice at the top of my Youtube App on my Toshiba Fire TV, it was “off” by default. I would have been upset if it was “on” by default and woke up my daughter whom I had just put to sleep.

  2. Keith says:

    I don’t like this feature. Netflix started it, I believe, awhile back. If I take more than a 3 second pause while browsing, the video starts to play. Most of the time I find it distracting, just wanna read the description or look at the thumbnail and move on. Maybe it’s just me, but it can be annoying.

  3. HN says:

    New things are bad !

  4. Tenderfoot56 says:

    Well, the easiest way to stop that is to replace the app with SmartTubeNext Beta which is at ver 13.50, and it totally eliminates all ad’s as well as having tons of customizations that work great! I’ll never go back to the YouTube Application.

  5. EmoBrianEno says:

    I got the notification as well made sure it was off and then a couple hours later all of my videos would only thumbnail art in the center of the screen while I could see a sliver of video on the right. Exit and force close app, try again, same thing, had to hard reset my Gen 2 Box to get it to go away.

  6. Ken Natco says:

    Since this new annoying “feature” was rolled out, it seems to be causing another intermittent problem. When playing a video. The sound volume will suddenly decrease and then then the thumbnail screen comes back as if I had intentionally exited the video. This is what normally happens if the thumbnail is left to do its auto-playing thing, which normally only lasts 30 to 60 seconds. If I restart the video, it will usually restart where I left off if I start it again, though sometimes an entirely new screen of thumbnails comes up and the only way to continue watching the video is to go to the viewing history where it will be the first in line. I’m hoping that if I can turn off the thumbnail autoplay “feature”, this glitch will also go away.

  7. tanker says:

    Install SmartTubeNext. You’ll be able to watch YouTube add free and it doesn’t play by itself in the background.

  8. Tasha says:

    I’m literally getting rage over this. I’ve turned it off and force stopped the app multiple times and despite it being “off” it still does the previews with audio. Not sure why it’s frustrating me so much or why the damn thing won’t turn off!!

    • Erin says:

      Tasha this is happening to me too! I’ve had the setting for previews with sound set to “off” for a long time and it used to work. But suddenly it’s playing the audio again. Hopefully it gets fixed soon!

  9. I’ve turned off audio and preview but when I’m browsing videos if I pause for a couple of seconds… Boom! Audio at full volume, I cannot seem to turn it off, YouTube is getting quite ridiculous lately, non stop adverts for Alcohol & Gambling and the sheer number of adverts is overwhelming, intro advert, video starts and within seconds yet another advert, absolutely ridiculous

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