Earlier this week, the YouTube Music team shared that the app would adopt a two-week update cycle to introduce highly requested features missing from Google’s latest streaming offering. The latest version of the Android client is rolling out and better details work on a possible “smart_remote” for televisions.
About APK Insight: In this ‘APK Insight’ post, we’ve decompiled the latest version of an application that Google uploaded to the Play Store. When we decompile these files (called APKs, in the case of Android apps), 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. We’ll try to enable those that are closer to being finished, however, to show you how they’ll look in the case that they do ship. With that in mind, read on.
Smart Remote for TVs
Back in June, version 2.35 of the app referenced a “SmartRemote” with the latest update today better detailing the functionality. Now refered to as a “smart_remote,” it will feature a virtual D-Pad with standard up/down/left/right controls and an “Enter” key. Version 2.43 includes a black-themed D-Pad icon that would fit with the rest of YouTube Music’s darker theme.
<string name=”mdx_dpad_down_contentDesc”>Down Dpad key button</string>
<string name=”mdx_dpad_enter_contentDesc”>Enter Dpad key button</string>
<string name=”mdx_dpad_left_contentDesc”>Left Dpad key button</string>
<string name=”mdx_dpad_right_contentDesc”>Right Dpad key button</string>
<string name=”mdx_dpad_up_contentDesc”>Up Dpad key button</string>
Other controls include a “Cast Button,” with that line also revealing how the smart remote could be for controlling YouTube Music on Cast-enabled televisions. Meanwhile, there is also a “Mic Button” for voice controls and a “Collapse Button” to quickly hide the interface.
<string name=”mdx_smart_remote_back_content_desc”>Dpad Button</string>
<string name=”mdx_smart_remote_cast_content_desc”>Cast Button. Click to disconnect from the TV.</string>
<string name=”mdx_smart_remote_collapse_content_desc”>Collapse Button. Click to minimize the Smart Remote UI</string>
<string name=”mdx_smart_remote_mic_content_desc”>Mic Button</string>
Version 2.43 also includes accompanying “mic” and “back” graphics, with those two icons also found in the latest version (13.30.56) of the primary YouTube client. We still don’t have a clear picture of what this smart remote will be for, but one possibility is a replacement for the generic Cast notification that is better tailored to YouTube products.
How to update?
Version 2.43.56 of YouTube Music is rolling out now via the Play Store. We do not post APKs to download directly given the legal challenges associated with copyright and possibility of removal. Meanwhile, that model moving forward is perilous given upcoming system-level changes from Android App Bundles and Google Play’s Dynamic Delivery.
Thanks to JEB Decompiler, which some APK Insight teardowns benefit from.
Dylan contributed to this article