YouTube TV surround sound coming to Android/Google TV

By | March 28, 2022

Google’s cord-cutting service currently only offers 5.1 audio on two device classes. YouTube TV today gave an update on bringing 5.1 surround sound to more users.

Acknowledging that “5.1 audio is important to many of you,” YouTube TV announced today that it’s “currently testing” it on Google TV, Android TV, and Roku. This hopefully includes the Chromecast with Google TV.

…if everything runs smoothly, we can expect 5.1 audio to launch on those devices next.

That said, no specific timeline was provided or info on whether Google is referring to public A/B testing or something more limited. Meanwhile, YouTube TV wants to bring surround sound to Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and game consoles, but it’s “still working internally and with partners” on that.

As of last June, the only supported 5.1 devices are “Samsung + LG + Vizio devices with Cobalt 20 or above” and Cast-based Chromecasts. A compatible speaker system is also of course required, with YouTube TV playing “5.1 audio whenever it’s available for the program you’re watching.”

That said, you can check manually under “Stats for nerds”:

1. Open the YouTube TV app on your TV, and play a video.

2. Go to the player controls, then select More.

3. Select the bug.

4. Stats for nerds will be displayed on top of the video while the video is playing.

If surround sound is available for the program you’re watching, you’ll see ac-3 (381) listed in the Codecs section.

Today’s tweet update follow comments last month about expanding surround sound support.

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