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Aadil Naik
Aadil Naik • Nov 17, 2017

YouTube releasing 'pinch-to-zoom' feature for the new age 18:9 aspect ratio of smartphone displays

This year may be truly called as the year of edge-to-edge display smartphones. The launch of LG G6, Galaxy S8, Galaxy Note8 and Galaxy S8+ earlier this year shows the trend towards a display format supporting a taller aspect ratio of 18.5:9. The earlier aspect ratio used to be the traditional 16:9. Newly released iPhone X came with an even higher aspect ratio of 19.5:9. This means that the display size of the phones has increased a lot over time. However, with apps not optimized for these kinds of display configurations, the usable space almost remains the same as in the older models. This has forced app developers to provide support for the higher aspect ratio displays. To this trend, YouTube is no exception.

The Google-owned video platform, YouTube has been playing videos with the general aspect ratio of 16:9. It is now rolling out an update to allow its users to fill the entire screen of their devices with universal aspect ratio. As of now, a YouTube video playing on a normal screen covers the entire display. However, if the same video is played on a "taller" display, the video covers only a fraction of the entire screen. The rest of the screen has black bars.
YouTube is now adding a new crop-zooming support in the app that will universally play videos on smartphones with any aspect ratio displays without any black bars at the edges. Although most smartphone companies have already tweaked their UIs to support higher aspect ratios, for those who haven't, YouTube provides the feature backed by its app.

This feature of YouTube is really a life savior for the video-streaming population who love doing it on their latest edge-to-edge smartphones. This is a timely upgrade by YouTube which hopefully will improve the video watching satisfaction on the latest devices. It may also be expected to serve as an inspiration for other app developers over time.

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Source: Digit India.

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