Google Chromecast is probably the most popular casting device on this planet right now. It is compatible with ton of apps. It supports both Android and iOS. However, one issue is plaguing it for quite long. YouTube disconnects from Chromecast randomly after sometime. This happens even on latest devices like Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL. Moreover, users report the Chromecast and YouTube connection issues after upgrading their devices’ OS like Oreo or Android Pie 9.0.
How does YouTube connect with Chromecast?
Before heading into the solution, you may want to understand how the whole process works. Knowing this is important because understanding the entire chain of events can make identifying issues easier.
In order to connect Chromecast with YouTube app on your phone, first connect both devices to same WiFi network. Once connected and set up, the phone or tablet will show cast icon in top right of compatible apps. This means that a casting device is available in this network. Tapping on this icon shows a list of Chromecast devices. This feature is for those users who use multiple Chromecast sticks in their homes.
In case of YouTube, once a user starts casting, the video link is sent over to device. At this point, you may lock the screen of phone and leave it anywhere. The video will keep playing. This is casting and not streaming. Casting means that the device is actually playing the video from direct source. You phone or tablet is not sending any data.
The only connection left at this point is for volume controls and changing videos. However, YouTube app disconnects from Chromecast after playing video for few minutes. The phone no longer has volume controls for it. Moreover, users cannot change the videos either. In order to regain controls, tap on the cast icon again and connect with same device.
Chromecast has 4 main variants until now. These include the versions from 1st generation and up to 3rd Gen Chromecast released in 2018. This also includes the Chromecast Ultra that supports high quality 4K content playback. This YouTube disconnection issue can happen on any of these variants. Therefore, the issue is most likely on the casting source and not the Chromecast.
YouTube Chromecast has no Volume controls!
When users start casting YouTube videos on their Chromecast dongles, they do not need to keep phone on or anything. The phone should always remain connected to it unless the user terminates this connection themselves. This is important for stuff like changing volume instantly, changing videos, pausing, and even seeking in videos.
Now, lets try to analyze why this actually happens. In order for Chromecast to stay connected to phone, they keep sending data packets back and forth. This is pretty much like how clients and servers maintain contact. As soon as one of the two devices lose connection (stop sending / receiving data packets) the connection is cut.
When phone cannot controls volume of YouTube on Chromecast, this means that phone/tablet is no longer communicating with dongle. It can happen even if the internet and WiFi are working perfectly. Therefore, the main culprit in this case is actually the background data limiters and battery saver features. These features are introduced and improved with every new update. The main reason for including these features is to make sure that battery runs longest. Since all of modern phones come with battery-hungry hardware out of the box.
Fix “YouTube disconnects from Chromecast” & “No Volume controls on Chromecast for YouTube”
We have already discussed how the battery saving features are the main reason behind this issue. However, this is not always the case. There are always some variations therefore multiple solutions are listed below.
Note that the given solutions may have different steps on different interfaces and phones. For example, Samsung Galaxy devices like Note 9, S9+, Note 8 have quite different interfaces compared to devices like Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL, OnePlus 6 and OnePlus 6T. However, the base concept is same and these settings are found on all modern Android devices.
- Head over to Settings > Apps > Open All Apps list.
- Scroll down and find YouTube.
- Open it, tap on Storage > Clear Cache and Clear Data.
- Restart the phone and try using it again.
- Head over to Settings > Apps > YouTube.
- Hit the menu button in top right (3 vertical dots).
- Tap on “Uninstall Updates”.
- Now restart the phone and install latest version of YouTube once again.
- Try using it with Chromecast now.
- It is actually a simple one.
- Turn off Chromecast and WiFi router.
- Follow solution 1 and 2 and then move to step 4.
- Restart the phone now.
- Restart the router and Chromecast dongle now.
- You may try using phone’s YouTube app with Chromecast dongle now.
- Head over to Settings > Battery Management.
- Open the “Unmonitored Apps” Section.
- Tap on the “Add App” button.
- Find and add YouTube from the list.
- If you cannot find YouTube in this list, then turn off “App Power Monitor” inside advanced settings of Battery Management.
Note that App Power Monitor may be under different names in different devices i.e. Background Battery Usage, Battery Usage, Adaptive Battery, App Monitor, Battery Saver etc. You just need to find the one for your device and turn it off.
- Open Settings > Connections > WiFi.
- Open Advanced tab.
- Search for option “Keep WiFi on during Sleep”.
- Set this option to Always on.
This setting prevents WiFi from turning off while phone enters sleep mode. This option is enabled by default in some cases and therefore disconnect YouTube app from Chromecast.
- Go to Settings > Connections > WiFi.
- Open the Advanced options tab.
- Search for “Smart Network Switch” and turn it off.
hrThis setting is turned on by default in some devices and works only when users keep mobile data and WiFi on at same time. Its task is to keep switching between both sources to ensure that you have best internet connection at all times. Therefore, once it switches from WiFi to mobile data, the connection with Chromecast will terminate.
Chromecast disconnecting from YouTube is a pretty annoying issue and usually starts happening after an OS upgrade or changing phone. This is most likely due to some new settings that prevent background data usage and also apps staying alive in background. If you cannot find a very specific solution here, it is most probably a related setting. Let us know in the comments below if you’re having a hard time solving this problem.
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