iOS Tip: Open YouTube links in mobile site instead of app

I have found that the YouTube mobile web site is MUCH better than the built-in iOS YouTube app on my iPad and iPhone. With the app, most of the time videos won’t play, or take forever to load, but load fine in the mobile web site. If you have the same experience, you can stop iOS from launching the YouTube app when you click on a YouTube link, and force it to use the YouTube mobile website instead.

Quick instructions

Turn off  YouTube under Settings > General > Restrictions.

Step by step instructions

Go to Settings

Select General:

Select Restrictions:

Select Enable Restrictions:

You will prompted to enter a restrictions passcode twice. This is different from your device lock code, but you can make it the same if you like. This password will be required to make changes to restrictions in the future including turning restrictions back off.

Applications that are ‘On’ are fully allowed. Turn off YouTube:


Now all YouTube links you click on in an iOS browser will open YouTube’s mobile website and the built-in YouTube app will be hidden.

If you decide you want to go back to using the app, just go back into these the restrictions settings and turn YouTube back on.