Widening accessibility on the video sharing platform, limitations on YouTube auto captions have been lifted. Find out more about this, plus other new features, here.

A welcome move in making the site more accessible to deaf people and the hard-of-hearing, YouTube auto captions will no longer be limited to channels with over 1,000 subscribers. When the feature was initially introduced, this was the requirement for enabling the feature. The site made the announcement yesterday (7th October), detailing updated captions and audio features coming soon.

“Improving accessibility is a top priority for YouTube, and we hope these updates will help creators reach a wider audience.”

The ability to add subtitles to videos on YouTube has been available for much longer. Creators can either opt for auto-sync captions, or manually input their own. Expanding the range of languages for the auto captions is something YouTube has also begun working on. They have added 12 more languages besides English, although these won’t be available right away. They have stated that we can expect to see these additions in the coming months.

Later this year, YouTube will be rolling out mobile updates for captions and audio. Currently only available on desktop, auto-translation for captions in supported languages on Android & iOS will be introduced. Also, YouTube says it will “experiment” with letting users search through transcripts on mobile to find specific keywords. This will be an extremely useful feature for anyone looking for key moments within videos, saving heaps of time scrubbing through the video itself.

The site previously announced the “Subtitle Editor” feature, and have confirmed they are still working on this. The feature will enable creators to designate other people to add subtitles to their videos by giving them specific permissions. Although this is taking longer than expected, YouTube says is it definitely in the works.