YouTube Music, the recently launched app from Google that will serve as a replacement for Google Play Music has just received a new feature. This new feature allows users to use the app to play any music files that are stored on the local storage of their smartphone. This means that users can play any audio file that they have sourced from places other than YouTube Music. This feature is already present on Google Play Music and it is a good thing that Google is adding any useful and essential features to YouTube Music before retiring Google Play Music.
According to a report by Android Police, this new feature rolled out as part of version 3.07.52 update but a somewhat old report by 9to5Google indicates that the feature initially rolled out with version 3.03. So it is possible that the actual version number of the feature to roll out to its users may be different. Given that this is a good feature addition to YouTube Music, it comes with a slight catch as mentioned in the original report.
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Explaining the catch here, users will only be able to use YouTube Music to play music files from outside the app with the help of a file manager. In addition, there is no way inside the app to browse the media files stored on the smartphone and play them. The means that we will have to wait for the full in-app media playback that is present in the Google Play Music.
This is not the only feature that is missing on YouTube Music when we compare the service with Google Play Music. Other missing features include the ability to access media files that were uploaded on Google Play Music, no direct way to import media playlists and libraries created on Google Play Music to YouTube music.
According to the report, users can play media files with MP3, Ogg, WAV, ACC-encoded M4A, and FLAC extensions. Though, it is likely that the app can play many more different formats of media files. Taking a look at the feature, it looks half-baked and somewhat useless in its current form and we hope that Google improves it in future versions of YouTube Music.