Over the past few months, I’ve become a golf addict again. I say again because its been 15 years or so since I last played more than a few rounds of golf per year. Spurred on by my son’s newfound interest in one of my favorite sports, I’ve gone all-in and spend quite a bit of time these days consuming video about the golf swing. There’s no getting around my slightly-obsessive nature when it comes to things like this, so I just get out of the way and let my passion be my passion.
Why am I telling you this? Because watching golf instruction videos on YouTube on my Chromecast with Google TV has been less-than-great over the past few weeks. YouTube is fine, but with highly complex movements like the golf swing, you sometimes need to slow stuff down to see what you are looking for, and it is precisely because of my re-found obsession that I realized the playback speeds for YouTube on the Chromecast have been strangely absent up until now.
While I’ve needed that slower 0.25x playback to see a particular move, I’ve also yearned for the 2x speed to get through the portions of videos that are not quite as interesting. Golf instructors have a tendency to talk A LOT between actually showing you the thing you want to see, so the lack of speed controls has hit me on both sides while watching YouTube lately and I’ve been very, very aware of it.
Speed controls now at your fingertips
Noticed by Android Police, it seems Google has finally rolled out speed controls for YouTube on Android TV and Google TV. It’s a simple addition and it lives precisely where you’d expect it to. While watching a video (golf-related or otherwise), simply push up on the remote’s directional pad, press up again to get to the actual 3-dot menu button, click that button and you’ll have all the normal controls you’d expect, along with the added speed controls option.
Again, this isn’t ground-breaking or revolutionary, but it is a very necessary part of the YouTube experience for many of us. With this addition, it really feels like the only thing missing from the YouTube experience on the big screen is the addition of some way to see, read and respond to comments on the video. I’m not entirely sure how Google could tackle this and I’m in no rush to try and poke out a comment with my tiny Google TV remote, but I would like to be able to see the video description, the included links, and at least glance through some comments if needed. For now, however, I have some golf videos to watch.