How to reduce data usage in YouTube mobile app?

There are a few settings you can tweak on the YouTube app to reduce the data usage other than reducing the video quality. Here is a list of those settings,

Turn off AutoPlay

If you are reading this article then there is a good chance that you have already done this. Turning off AutoPlay prevents YouTube from automatically playing the next video. To turn off AutoPlay go to, Settings -> AutoPlay and turn off AutoPlay .

Turn off Muted playbacks

Have you noticed that when you are looking at a video thumbnail for a few seconds, a video starts to play in place of the thumbnail. This is called muted playback. This is designed to show a preview of the video you might be interested in, but it consumes considerable amount of data. You can turn this feature off in the settings or restrict it to WiFi.
  • Go to Settings in the YouTube app.
  • Navigate to General Settings and select Muted Playback in feeds.
  • Choose from of the three options - Always On, WiFi only or Off.

Limit Video Quality on mobile data

I know I said that it is not about reducing Video quality but this Setting is worth a mention. It automatically restricts the video quality when you are on mobile internet. It is useful for those with high speed mobile internet as YouTube will play high quality videos on faster internet automatically. This also does not affect the quality of videos on WiFi.
Go to Settings in the YouTube app.
Navigate to General Settings and Turn on Limit mobile data usage.

Turn off Download recommendations

This feature recommends videos to download based on your profile. If you don't use this feature you can turn it off to save some data.
  • Go to YouTube Settings -> Background and Downloads
  • Turn off Recommend Downloads