How to Use Google Home to Play YouTube Videos

Get the audio to all your favorite selections

Google owns YouTube, so you would think it should be easy to use Google Home with YouTube. However, the Google Home device you have determines how you can access and control YouTube. Here's what you need to know about using Google Home to play your YouTube videos.

Google Home devices include the standard Google Home, mini, and max smart speakers, as well as the Google Home/Nest Hub, and other select Google Home-enabled smart speakers and displays.

Google Home smart speakers can play selections from the YouTube Music service, but since they don't have a screen you can't watch the video or directly play audio from YouTube videos.

However, there is a workaround. Using Bluetooth, you can watch a YouTube video on your phone or PC and listen to the audio portion on a Google Home smart speaker. You can also use this trick to listen to YouTube audio on a Google Home Hub/Nest or compatible smart display if want to watch the video portion on your phone or PC.

You can't use the YouTube Cast option to hear YouTube audio only on a Google Home smart speaker.

Playing YouTube Audio on Google Home From a Smartphone

Here is how to play audio from YouTube videos on a Google Home from your smartphone.

  1. Open the Google Home app and tap on the icon that represents your Google Home Speaker.

    Screenshots on Android of selecting a Google Home speaker.
  2. On the next screens, tap Settings > Paired Bluetooth Devices > Enable Pairing Mode

    Screenshots of Android and Google Home App setting up Bluetooth pairing.
  3. Open Bluetooth on your phone (in the phone's settings, not the Google Home app), the tap Available Devices and choose your Google Home device.

    Smartphone – Turn on Bluetooth – Select Google Home Speaker
  4. Once the phone and Google Home device are paired, open YouTube on your smartphone to play something. You can watch YouTube videos on your smartphone while the music or other companion audio plays on your Google Home.

Playing YouTube Audio From a PC on a Google Home

You can also play YouTube audio from a PC or laptop on a Google Home device in a similar fashion as from a smartphone.

  1. In your computer's Settings enable Bluetooth and then select Add Bluetooth or Other Device.

    PC Settings – Bluetooth and Other Devices
  2. Select Bluetooth from the Add a Device dialog box.

    PC Add Bluetooth Device
  3. On your smartphone, open the Google Home app and tap your Google Home device.

    Google Home App > Select Device
  4. In the Google Home app tap Device settings > Paired Bluetooth devices > Enable Pairing Mode

    Google Home App – Device Settings – Pair Bluetooth Devices – Enable Pairing
  5. When Bluetooth pairing mode is activated in the Google Home app, the Google Home Device should appear on the Add a Device list on your PC. When you click on the device Icon, the pairing/connection process between the PC and Google Home will start.

    Screenshots on Android showing how to add a device.
  6. When pairing is confirmed, a prompt will appear saying "Connection completed" or "Your Device is ready to go!"

    Screenshots on Android showing a successful Google Home pairing.

    Under your paired Google Home, you might see a caption that says "Connected Music". However, any audio, including YouTube audio will play on the Bluetooth-paired Google Home device from the PC.

  7. Your PC is added to your Google Home's Bluetooth devices list. If there are multiple paired devices on the list, highlight the Bluetooth icon for your PC, to enable audio playback.

    Screenshots on Android showing paired Bluetooth devices.
  8. You can now watch the video portion of YouTube on your PC and listen to the audio on your Google Home device. If you want to listen to YouTube audio back on your PC, just use Google Assistant to say "Google, turn off Bluetooth".

    A Google Home and laptop using YouTube.

Using YouTube with Google Home/Nest Hub and Smart Displays

If you have a Google Home/Nest Hub or other Google-enabled smart display YouTube is one of the apps you can view directly on the screen (no smartphone, PC, or TV) and listen to YouTube audio on the device's built-in speakers.

You may also be able to use Google Home with a Bluetooth-enabled speaker to listen to YouTube audio instead. 

Although Lenovo Smart Displays are classified as Google Home-enabled devices and can play audio from external Bluetooth sources (smartphones/PCs), they can't act as a source to play YouTube audio on an external Bluetooth speaker.

To use a Google Home/Nest Hub with a Bluetooth Speaker, do the following:

  1. Turn on your Bluetooth speaker and activate pairing mode according its instructions (usually a button push).

  2. Open the Google Home app and tap your Hub or compatible display.

    Screenshots on Android of the Home app's available devices.
  3. Select Device Settings > Default music speaker.

    The default speaker shown in this step is your current Google Home device, you will change this to your desired Bluetooth speaker in the next step.

    Screenshots on Android of selecting a default music speaker.
  4. Change your current Google Home device to Pair Bluetooth Speaker and proceed with the scanning and pairing process.

    Screenshots on Android of Google Home App choosing and pairing Bluetooth speaker.
  5. Once pairing is completed, you can use Voice Commands or the Touchscreen on the Google Home/Nest Hub or compatible smart display to control YouTube navigation and control functions. You can watch YouTube videos on the screen and listen to its audio on your paired default Bluetooth speaker.

Using Google Home To Play YouTube Audio and Video on Select TVs

You can also use Google Home with Chromecast to show YouTube on TVs. If you have a Chromecast or a TV with Chromecast built-in, using Google Assistant, you can tell a Google Home smart speaker or Google Home Hub/Nest to play YouTube on the TV (audio and video will both play). 

You can also use Google Assistant, through Google Home, to control some YouTube navigation features to select videos, and play, pause, and resume them.

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