A handy feature has quietly been added to YouTube without any major fanfare from the Google-owned video service.
The new tool allows viewers to set videos to loop on the desktop version of the site. In the past, the lack of an auto-repeat function meant that in order to loop a YouTube video, users would have to download a third-party extension.
The easy-to-use update bypasses that by allowing you to simply right click on the video you wish to set to repeat and then select the loop option from the pop-up menu. The selected video will then restart from the beginning once it finishes.
The new loop feature was first spotted by Web developer and computer science student Henry Lim. There has been no official word from YouTube or Google as to when exactly it was implemented.
The update will come in handy for users who listen to music via YouTube, giving them the ability to repeat tracks, albums, and music videos — the way you would on any other music streaming service. Additionally, if you want to set longer videos to repeat (in case you miss anything) you can do that too.
It will also come in handy for dance enthusiasts, as choreography videos tend to be popular on the video platform. One of the biggest videos of last year was Tianne King’s dance group doing Silento — Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae). If you want to stay in tune with the next viral dance sensation, the repeat function could help you perfect your moves.
The loop function is currently only available on the desktop version of YouTube, with no indication as to when it will arrive on the platform’s mobile apps.
Music remains a major draw on YouTube with music videos dominating viewership numbers. The top music videos of 2015 garnered more than 66 million subscribers, and people spent the equivalent of over 37,000 years watching them over the course of the last 12 months. The ability to repeat videos will likely only boost numbers for the year ahead.