You can finally listen to YouTube music on Wear OS, no phone required

A photo of a Wear OS smartwatch streaming YouTube Music

YouTube Music for Wear OS finally gets a thumbnail!
Photo: Florence Ion / Gizmodo

Good news for listening to YouTube Musicandrs! A compatible app for Wear OS is finally here so you can take your playlists with you on the go.

Google announced in a user community post that YouTube Music is finally a standalone app. This week the company will start rolling out the ability to stream YouTube Music via LTE and wifi. No longer will you need to carry your phone in your back pocket to access your YouTube Music playlists or pre-download the music you want to play on the track. All you will need is an internet connection on the watch itself.

This standalone version of YouTube Music is the first smartwatch app for the streaming service after it abruptly replaced Google Play Music end of 2020. Samsung had pre-announced this capability earlier this year for its flagship smartwatch, the Galaxy Watch 4which is one of our favorite Android watches right now.

If you’re a YouTube Music Premium subscriber, you’ll have access to the service’s entire streaming library, as well as pre-made playlists. You won’t have to endure ads either, and the app comes with a smart downloads feature to ensure the latest music is synced to your watch whenever it’s back on WiFi. YouTube Music will also start aggregating new playlists based on your history as you continue to listen.

If you’re already on a Wear OS smartwatch, you’ll have access to the new YouTube Music tile. The thumbnail is like a quick-launch remote control for all recently played playlists. This will also allow you to browse the main page of the YouTube Music app from your watch.

Tiles work like widgets, where you can place them in its own screen space to slide into when you’re ready to listen. Music apps such as Spotify offer a similar tile that remains integrated into the Wear OS interface, so you can head over and start the music whether or not you have headphones on.

For more information, Google has updated its support page with instructions on the new YouTube Music app for Wear OS. The update is expected to roll out to YouTube Music users this week.

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