YouTube has brought back HD streaming to its mobile app for users in India. During the initial stages of the lockdown, it was announced that streaming quality on the app in India will be restricted to SD (480p) to save Internet bandwidth. Now, it seems like the restriction has been lifted and YouTube videos on the mobile app are available to watch at HD, full-HD, and even higher quality. However, this is only applicable when watching videos on the app using Wi-Fi and mobile data viewing is still restricted to SD quality.
The YouTube app now allows users in India to watch videos in HD quality when connected to Wi-Fi. Depending on what quality the video has been uploaded in, the quality settings now show options for 720p, 1080p, and 1440p, besides the standard definition 144p, 240p, 360p, and 480p. Notably, the HD options are only available when connected to Wi-Fi as the same video when viewed on mobile data reverts to 480p quality.
Additionally, this development appears to be for all YouTube users and not just the YouTube Premium subscription holders. This means everyone should be able to view videos in HD on the app. As of now, the Google-owned service has not made any official declaration for the same.
The SD streaming restriction was executed back in March during the initial coronavirus lockdown to save bandwidth. Not just YouTube, but other streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney+ Hotstar had also done the same. Notable, it was stated that YouTube will temporarily default to SD quality at 480p on mobile networks until April 14. But, this restriction still continues for mobile data users.
But, now that YouTube has allowed HD streaming on the app when connected to Wi-Fi, mobile data users should also see the restriction lifted in the near future.