Lean Back, Control YouTube from your phone

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It really is a mystery why this wonderful little feature does not have as many fans as it deserves. Weary and content (or not) from a long day’s work, even tapping away a few keys might seem hard work. In comes YouTube Leanback.  Drop down on your recliner and let YouTube serve you with its best videos.

Once you enter Leanback, you no longer need your mouse. Arrow keys are used to change categories and sub-categories. It offers you to select among predefined topics, featured topics and to search for a video. There are a huge number of categories available, so it will be a long time before you run out of options.

If you are logged in, all your uploaded videos, playlists and Quicklists are also shown.  All videos are played on the entire screen without comments, suggested videos, or even the search bar. All this serves to turn your screen into a media centre.

Another interesting feature that LeanBack provides is YouTube Remote. This essentially turns your Android phone into a remote control for Leanback. You no longer need to be swamped over your desk to watch videos. Use your phone to control YouTube from the comfort of your bed.

Here’s how to do this –

  1. Download the YouTube Remote app from Android Market. When you install and run this free app on your Android phone for the first time, it will ask you to associate your free Google Account with this app. Once you associate your Google Account with YouTube Remote app, it will then ask you to enter a Pairing Code for YouTube. You can obtain your free Pairing Code from YouTube.
  2. Visit http://www.youtube.com/leanback on your computer. Click on the “My YouTube” link on the left sidebar. It will ask you to sign in to your YouTube account (if you are not already logged in). Once you’ve done that, depending on whether you’re visiting the site for the first time, it will present the following screen:

  3. Go to http://www.google.com/device and enter the code provided above. Once you do that, you’ll get a “Success” message and Leanback will now be activated for your device.
  4. Again, click on the “My YouTube”  link on the left sidebar. Look for the “Pair”button that says: “Pair your screen with a mobile device”. Click on the button, and you’ll get the following screen.

  5. Finally, enter this Pairing Code (as obtained from the second step, above) into the YouTube Remote app in your Android phone, and tap on the “Add Screen” button.

Your Device is now set to be used as a YouTube Remote.

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