Earlier today, YouTube for Android jumped to version 13.0 (from 12.x) and with it hints at a number of new upcoming features in development. This includes a long-awaited dark theme, Incognito mode, and other changes that are already live in the app.

About APK Teardowns: In this ‘APK teardown,’ we’ve decompiled the latest version of an application that was uploaded to the Play Store. When an app (or an APK, to be specific, in the case of Android apps) is decompiled, we’re able to see various lines of code within that hint at possible future features. Keep in mind that Google may or may not ever ship these features, and our interpretation of what they are may be imperfect. With that in mind, read on.

Dark theme

With the YouTube redesign on the web adding a dark theme, it was only a matter of time before that coveted feature made its way to the mobile clients, especially given how YouTube Music already has a darkened interface. Version 13.01 of YouTube features strings that note a “Dark theme” and the ability to use it “throughout the app.”

<string name=”pref_developer_dark_theme_for_app_summary”>Use dark theme throughout the app</string>

<string name=”pref_developer_dark_theme_for_app_title”>Dark theme</string>

If the web client is any indication, there will likely be a switch where users can enable/disable this night mode.

Incognito mode

Like in Chrome and Gboard, YouTube could be the next app to feature an Incognito mode. At the moment, users can pause watch and search history by heading to “History & privacy” in settings. However, this is not only cumbersome, but also not obvious when it’s enabled.

<string name=”turn_off_incognito”>Turn Off Incognito</string>

An easier solution would be an Incognito mode that disables both settings simultaneously, while also explicitly noting when turned on, as possibly evidenced by this icon that we also discovered in our teardown.

Swipe to skip ads

For those who do not have YouTube Red in their countries, ads are often played in front of videos. The best kinds are the ones that allow users to skip through after watching for five seconds. YouTube might soon simplify this step by letting users swipe away an ad, instead of tapping.

<string name=”swipe_to_skip_ad”>Swipe to skip</string>

Standalone Autoplay settings

Settings sees a brief reorganization that breaks out the Autoplay setting into its own menu item rather than being listed under General. This toggle for determining whether videos play after one another is otherwise unchanged.

Dylan contributed to this article

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About the Author

Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: abner@9to5g.com