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Home / Tips and Tricks / With this shortcut you can download YouTube videos on your iPhone directly from the source, No Shady Services needs «iOS & iPhone :: Gadget Hacks

With this shortcut you can download YouTube videos on your iPhone directly from the source, No Shady Services needs «iOS & iPhone :: Gadget Hacks



If you always want to download YouTube videos directly to your iPhone, there's a simple solution – just upgrade to iOS 12 and install Apple's new shortcuts app. With the Workflow Replacement app, you can add a shortcut that lets you download any YouTube video without jailbreaking or using dubious third-party tools.

Over the years, there have been numerous apps and methods for circumventing YouTube. Restricting and downloading YouTube videos to your iPhone's library. Google beats them down quickly, so they never lasted long. You can continue to load apps like YouTube ++ by page, but that's risky because you're missing app store protection from spam and platform abuse.

A Safer Way to Save YouTube Videos to Your Camera Roll and Videos Albums Use the Shortcuts app shortcut to connect to YouTube's own API so you can watch the video directly from obtained from the source. It probably works for a long time too, unlike these dodgy apps from the past.

Of course, you can not help the platform by using a shortcut to download YouTube videos to your iPhone. Above all, you will only hurt the creators you see. If you want or need to see YouTube content on the go, we recommend subscribing to YouTube Premium.

Step 1
: Add the "Download YouTube" link

Unlike other shortcuts, you will not find them in the "Gallery" shortcuts tab. If you do not create this link yourself, you'll need to download it from someone who has already created a link. Reddit user Varoeldurr generously shared her version – among other shortcuts – for downloading YouTube videos. Just tap the link on your iPhone and then "Get Shortcut" to add shortcuts to it. When you see the workflow page, tap Done to show your shortcuts library.

To see what's going on in your new shortcut, tap the 3D Touch shortcut or tap the ellipse (•••) in the top right corner of the tile. But more about how it works later, let's use it!

Step 2: Use the link to save YouTube videos

Unlike some other links, you can not call this function directly from the link. It also does not make sense to add a widget, a splash screen link, or a Siri link.

This link works only if you are watching a YouTube video in the YouTube app or in a web browser. Access the Stock Sheet. For more information about the sharing sheet in Safari, YouTube, and other popular apps, see the list below.

  • Cake: Sharing icon in the bottom bar
  • Chrome: Vertical ellipses next to the URL bar -> Share icon
  • DuckDuckGo: Hamburger icon next to URL bar -> Share …
  • Firefox: Ellipsis (•••) in URL bar -> Share page with …
  • Firefox Focus: Ellipsis (•••) in URL bar -> Share Page with …
  • Safari: Share icon on the bottom bar
  • YouTube (browsing): Vertical ellipse next to Video -> Share -> More
  • YouTube (if in video ): Subtitles -> More
From an open video on YouTube (left) and in Safari (right) chts) t)

Tap here on "Shortcuts". If you do not see this option, tap More, and then turn on shortcuts from the list.

After clicking "Shortcuts," just tap [Download] on the Run Shortcut screen to start the download. Once you do this, you will see the link in action, usually as "Get [s] URL Content" (more on this later). Once you're done, you can choose either "Share" or "Save to photo album." To bring the video to your "Camera Roll" album in Photos for later viewing, tap the Save option.

How does this link work?

If you're like me, you'll be first time you perform this shortcut, be overwhelmed. It seems like it runs on magic – downloading a YouTube video in seconds? On a iPhone ? How can it be?

The link simply goes through the YouTube API call response data – the data generated when loading the YouTube video – to find the download URL in a compatible format with your iPhone. Once this is the case, the file is downloaded and you are prompted to save or share the video.

You may not have known it yet, but all the information needed to download a YouTube video was included in the URL itself. It just takes a few code dissects to find it.

Step 4: Customize the shortcut (optional)

There is not much that you can customize with this shortcut, besides the album where the video is supposed to end up is always in your "Camera Roll" albums and "Videos," but you can also create a new "YouTube" album in your Photos app and then use that link for better organization.

Go to With the Shortcuts library you can view the "Download YouTube" tile with 3D Touch or tap the ellipse (•••) in the upper right corner of the tile. From there, scroll down to the large first part of the workflow – where you'll see the URL of the page you're on, find out if it's a YouTube video, locate the video file, and share or save it Be prepared Tap on "Camera Roll" or "All Photos" in the "Save to Photo Album" action below.

This opens a menu where you can select an album to which you want to insert the videos. YouTube "album in photos, select it, if it's another album you want, then select it, then tap" Done "in the upper right corner of the workflow to save it.

Cover Picture, Screenshots and GIFs by Jake Peterson / Gadget Hacks

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