YouTube to delete video annotations from 15 Jan 2019 due to drop in desktop viewership

The reason behind the decision is the drop in the number of people who see the annotations in videos.

YouTube is all set to get rid of its video annotation feature come January next year.

According to a report in CNET, the world's largest video streaming platform will be dropping its video annotations feature from 15 January 2019. The reason behind the decision is the drop in the number of people who see the annotations in videos.

YouTube Logo. Image: YouTube Creator Academy

YouTube Logo. Image: YouTube Creator Academy

The shift in video viewing patterns from desktop PC to mobile has prompted this decision, as the video annotation feature is not available on mobile phones. According to YouTube, around 70 percent of the watch time is now on mobile phones. The drop in desktop viewership is not working in favour of the annotation feature which was introduced in June 2008 to add layers of text or links or highlights to your video.

Another feature present on YouTube to add some layer to the videos is the interactive cards, which are denoted by a small 'i' in the top right-hand corner. You can add things such as other videos or even have a poll there which the creator may add and much more. It is less disruptive than annotations as you need to hit that circular 'i' icon for the card to show, whereas annotations are time-stamp based. The only way to get rid of it is to toggle the annotations off.

The annotations editor on YouTube was disabled in May 2017, which means you can no longer add any annotations, but only edit existing ones or delete them.

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