Up until recently, embedded YouTube videos on Safari pages on my first-gen iPad (iOS 5) worked as you'd expect, with the video duration and draggable time bar shown at the bottom, and the ability to send the video to my AppleTV via AirPlay.

Today I tried for the first time in a couple of weeks, and while the videos still play fine, the duration is shown as '--', the draggable time bar is disabled, and although the AirPlay icon still appears, I can now only send the audio to my AppleTV. This appears to be the case on any embedded videos I could find, such as those on my own homepage and this scrapbooking page (which my wife frequents!)

Have YouTube just changed something about the way they deliver embedded videos to iOS devices to cripple them in this way, or have I inadvertently changed something on my iPad that could have caused this?

(I have at least discovered a workaround, that I suspect might only work on iOS 5 older: tapping the title at the top of the video opens it in the original YouTube app. And from there, AirPlay works fine, as it does in the Google YouTube app.)

2 Answers 2


(This info is in response to a slightly different question on this forum)

I don't know what the actual answer is, but I am having the same issue. The page https://developer.apple.com/library/safari/documentation/AudioVideo/Conceptual/Using_HTML5_Audio_Video/AudioandVideoTagBasics/AudioandVideoTagBasics.html

has some good info. And the page https://developer.apple.com/library/safari/documentation/AudioVideo/Conceptual/Using_HTML5_Audio_Video/Device-SpecificConsiderations/Device-SpecificConsiderations.html#//apple_ref/doc/uid/TP40009523-CH5-SW1


"Optimization for Small Screens

Currently, Safari optimizes video presentation for the smaller screen on iPhone or iPod touch by playing video using the full screen—video controls appear when the screen is touched, and the video is scaled to fit the screen in portrait or landscape mode. Video is not presented within the webpage. The height and width attributes affect only the space allotted on the webpage, and the controls attribute is ignored. This is true only for Safari on devices with small screens. On Mac OS X, Windows, and iPad, Safari plays video inline, embedded in the webpage." -

Which, I believe, means on the iPad, that the video plays at the resolution of the initial window (determined by the programmer), and does not naturally play on the YoutTube player, or at a higher res if you enlarge the video.

This seems to be the "problem" that we're encountering - that its a "feature" specific to Safari on the iPad. Why they do this, I dunno. In my case, the video plays at a higher res (and better) on my smaller iPhone than does on my iPad mini with Retna. Go figure.

I came upon this post, hoping to find the answer and a work around. If you get the Youtube app, and find the video through that, it will play at the highest resolution, but not through Safari. So far as I can tell.



That has happen to me a bunch of times on safari on my iPhone 5s, but the funny thing is that the same videos play just fine if you browse the same page using Chrome iOS. I wonder if it is not just google blocking these videos on safari to force people to switch to Chrome iOS.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .