|App Name||YouTube Vanced|
|Last Updated||Aug 30, 2023|
This comprehensive review will cover the key features of YouTube Vanced, how to download and install it, alternatives, and whether it is safe to use.
YouTube Vanced is a modified version of the stock YouTube app for Android. It looks nearly identical to the original YouTube app but comes with additional features like:
The name “Vanced” comes from “Advanced without ads.” The app provides an enhanced YouTube experience on Android by removing the annoying ads and unlocking premium features, all for free.
Here are some of the standout features that make YouTube Vanced a popular mod over the stock YouTube app:
The core feature of Vanced is its ability to completely block ads on YouTube. This includes:
Vanced leverages the open-source SponsorBlock project to detect and skip over sponsored segments in videos. This results in a seamless, uninterrupted viewing experience.
YouTube Vanced allows you to minimize the app or turn off your device’s screen while a video continues playing audio in the background. This feature is normally exclusive to YouTube Premium subscribers, but Vanced unlocks it for free.
Background audio is perfect for listening to music playlists or podcasts on YouTube just like a regular music streaming app.
The picture-in-picture mode in Vanced lets you watch YouTube videos in a small floating window while simultaneously using other apps on your device. You can resize this PiP window and drag it around as needed.
In December 2021, YouTube controversially removed public dislike counts on all videos across the platform. Vanced brings back the ability to see how many dislikes a video has, using dislike data from before the removal.
This helps viewers gauge the quality and reception of videos at a glance. The dislike data is provided by the Return YouTube Dislike browser extension.
YouTube Vanced comes with a true black dark mode that’s ideal for AMOLED displays. This can help extend battery life and reduce eye strain when watching videos in low light conditions.
The stock YouTube app only provides a dark gray theme, while Vanced offers a pitch black night mode.
Vanced provides granular control over video resolution and playback settings:
You’re no longer limited by the max resolution set for your device. Vanced removes these artificial restrictions.
You can customize the look and feel of the app with options like:
This allows you to declutter the interface and tailor it to your preferences.
YouTube Vanced supports swipe gestures to control brightness and volume while watching full-screen videos, without having to pause or exit the video.
This convenient feature eliminates the need to fumble around to find your device’s physical buttons.
Vanced utilizes a open source re-implementation of Google’s proprietary Play Services called MicroG. This allows you to log into your Google account to access subscriptions, playlists, watch history, and other personal data.
The process to download and install YouTube Vanced is straightforward, but does involve a few more steps compared to installing regular apps from the Play Store.
There are separate APK files for Vanced and MicroG that need to be installed. Here are the steps:
That’s it! YouTube Vanced should now be ready to use on your Android device with all the additional features unlocked. Make sure to disable auto-updates for the Vanced app in your device settings to avoid unwanted upgrades.
The Vanced Manager app can optionally be used to simplify installing updates and switching between Vanced themes. But it is not required.
YouTube Premium is Google’s paid subscription service that provides an ad-free viewing experience and background play for $11.99 per month. So how exactly does the free YouTube Vanced compare against the paid Premium service?
|Feature||YouTube Vanced||YouTube Premium|
YouTube Vanced replicates most of the core benefits of Premium, like removing ads and enabling background play. However, Premium does offer additional perks like video downloads, exclusive original content, and offline playback support.
So while Vanced provides an ad-free YouTube experience at no cost, Premium has a few extras that might be worth the monthly fee for some users.
Here are some of the top alternative apps to YouTube Vanced:
While none of the alternatives fully replicate all of Vanced’s features, they provide a similar ad-free YouTube experience on mobile.
The safety and legality of YouTube Vanced is a bit nuanced. Here are some key points:
So while YouTube Vanced itself is likely safe to use based on community feedback, you do assume some risks inherent with installing unauthorized APK files. It is advisable to download Vanced from trusted sources only.
In March 2022, the Vanced Team announced that it will no longer be developing or distributing the app due to legal pressures from Google. While existing installs still work fine, the app will eventually stop working as YouTube updates its backend API.
But soon after the discontinuation of Vanced, a new fork called ReVanced emerged that aims to continue the original app’s legacy. ReVanced provides similar ad blocking and background playback features by patching the official YouTube APK.
The cat-and-mouse game between Google and Vanced developers continues. As long as there is demand for an ad-free YouTube experience on Android, modded alternatives are likely here to stay in some form.
YouTube Vanced delivers on its promise of providing a free, ad-free YouTube experience on Android with background play and other premium features unlocked. It is a highly capable mod that improves the stock YouTube app in many ways.
While the legal status of Vanced is questionable, it poses no obvious security risks for end users if downloaded from trusted sources like APKMirror.
Now that official development of Vanced has ceased, alternatives like ReVanced aim to continue the same legacy. But they too face challenges in avoiding Google’s anti-piracy efforts.
Overall, YouTube Vanced is a must-try mod for any Android user looking to eliminate annoying ads and sponsorships from their YouTube experience. It frees the platform from interruptions, allowing you to enjoy videos without distractions.