Following in the footsteps of Instagram, YouTube is testing the ability to replace the Explore tab with a dedicated Shorts tab in the bottom navigation bar of the app. Anmol from our team saw the test on his phone with YouTube beta version 16.17.36. After a quick Twitter search, we noticed YouTube started testing this change on both Android on iOS earlier last week.
YouTube Shorts tab in the YouTube app
To put things in perspective, here’s a comparison between the current YouTube app homepage and the upcoming redesign that should probably be rolled out soon. As can be seen in the image below, the Exploring the section receives less attention in the test version. YouTube has moved the Explore section to the top left corner of the app, which is exactly where Shorts currently exists.
YouTube’s decision to move the Shorts tab to the bottom navigation bar comes as no surprise, considering how much momentum short video apps like TikTok have been gaining in recent times. What I don’t like about the new implementation, however, is that the Shorts section continues to appear on the home page, despite there being a dedicated tab in the navigation bar. The idea of pushing Shorts through YouTube’s homepage, even after it takes pride of place in the YouTube app, feels like the company is trying too hard, at least in my opinion.
At the time of writing this article, YouTube has not yet widely rolled out the new Shorts tab. However, we could expect it to happen in the coming weeks. If you’re a video creator, now is a great time to peruse our list of YouTube Shorts tips to take advantage of the upcoming boost in user activity and engagement.