How To Watch YouTube Shorts Without the App

Following TikTok’s massive success, many other social media apps and platforms are implementing similar features to keep us scrolling. YouTube’s Shorts are one of the latest iterations of the short-form video format that is so popular these days. But do you know how to watch YouTube shorts without the app?

If you have no time for 30-minute video essays, YouTube Shorts can be a breath of fresh air. You can view a couple of Shorts for a quick dose of entertainment. But can you access these videos without downloading the YouTube app? Of course! Here’s how to watch YouTube Shorts without the app.

Watching YouTube Shorts Without the App

YouTube Shorts are videos that are less than 60 seconds long and are filmed in a 9:16 aspect ratio to fill the screens of mobile phones. Although they belong to a different category than the usual content of this video platform, Shorts don’t have its own dedicated app. They are integrated into the YouTube app and can be accessed from the home page by tapping the “Shorts” button at the bottom of the screen.

But Shorts aren’t confined to just the home page of the mobile app. They can be accessed all over YouTube. You may see Shorts suggestions on your home page, in your search results, and in many other places. You can differentiate these videos from regular YouTube videos thanks to the red “Shorts” logo that appears in the corner of each Shorts’ thumbnail as you browse YouTube.

Fortunately, you don’t have to scavenge for Shorts when you feel like watching a couple of quick videos. There are several ways to access them outside of the YouTube app, whether you’re using your PC, mobile or tablet device. All you’ll have to do is visit YouTube from your browser, and use one of several options, depending on your device.

How to Watch YouTube Shorts on a PC

Finding Shorts on PC used to be challenging, but YouTube has added a feature that gives us easy access to these videos right from the homepage. In addition, you can always leverage YouTube’s search engine to find exactly what you’re looking for.

Find the Shorts Tab

The easiest way to open your Shorts feed on your PC requires you to switch to the “Shorts” tab in your sidebar. Find YouTube Shorts in the following way.

  1. Open your browser and navigate to the YouTube website.
  2. Find the “Shorts” button in the left sidebar.
  3. Short videos will start playing automatically. You can scroll to watch the next one.

Browse the Hashtag

Have you noticed that YouTube Shorts always have “#shorts” in their title or description? According to YouTube, creators should add this hashtag to their content to make their video easier to discover in the sea of other content.

As most, if not all, Shorts are marked by this hashtag, finding and watching Shorts on YouTube using your browser will be a breeze. All you need to do is type “#shorts” into the search bar, and you’ll have plenty of options. Here’s the process.

  1. Open your browser and navigate to YouTube.
  2. Look for “#shorts” using the search bar.
  3. The first result will be the Shorts hashtag that contains all videos uploaded with this tag. Click the hashtag to access a random selection of Shorts.
  4. Select any video to enter the endless Shorts feed.

Tip: You can also navigate directly to this hashtag page by typing “/hashtag/shorts” after YouTube’s URL in your browser’s address bar.

Search for Shorts on Any Topic

Browsing the Shorts hashtag is a great option when you aren’t looking for anything in particular, and you’re wondering how to watch YouTube Shorts without the app. However, the randomness of the content may not be for everyone. Fortunately, you can easily narrow down your search to only see shorts related to a specific topic. Here’s how to do it.

  1. Open YouTube in your browser.
  2. Type “#shorts” and a “+” sign in the search bar.
  3. YouTube will suggest you a variety of different topics automatically. Choose any of them or type in the topic you are interested in.
  4. Hit Enter, and you’ll see Shorts tagged with the topic of your interest.
  5. Click any of the Shorts to access the feed.

Watch Shorts From a Specific Creator

Are you interested in the Shorts of a particular creator instead of a general topic? Fortunately, you don’t have to visit the channel of the YouTuber in question every time you want to watch their Shorts. You can use the search bar to filter out their content in the blink of an eye.

  1. Open YouTube and type “#shorts” in the search bar.
  2. Add a “+” sign, then write the name of the YouTuber you’re interested in.
  3. Press your Enter key to see Shorts uploaded by this creator.
  4. Open any video with the “Shorts” sticker on its thumbnail, and you’ll be taken to the Shorts feed.

How to Watch YouTube Shorts on Mobile Devices Without the App

Shorts are optimized for mobile screens, so watching them on these devices will provide the best experience. But you don’t need to download the YouTube app for this – instead, you’ll use your mobile browser to access the Shorts feed or search for particular videos.

Use the Mobile Site

Did you know that you don’t actually need the YouTube app to use most of its features on your mobile device? You can simply open YouTube in your mobile browser and navigate the mobile site, much as you do on the app. You don’t even have to log in. Let’s see how to access Shorts this way.

  1. Open your mobile browser and go to the YouTube web page.
  2. Tap the “Shorts” button in the bottom toolbar.
  3. A random video will start playing automatically. Tap to pause the video or scroll to move on to the next one.

Search Shorts on Mobile

Similar to PC, you can use the YouTube mobile site’s search feature to find the Shorts you want. Here’s what you need to do.

  1. Launch your mobile browser and navigate to YouTube.
  2. Search “#shorts” by typing it in the search bar. You can also add “+” and a topic or creator you’re interested in to narrow down your search.
  3. Not all search results might be Shorts. Pick a video with the “Shorts” icon on its thumbnail to open the Shorts feed.
  4. Scroll away!

How to Watch YouTube Shorts on Tablet Devices Without the App

Do you prefer to watch videos using your tablet? No worries – you can still access YouTube Shorts on your device, even if it doesn’t have the YouTube app. Follow the steps below to find out how to watch YouTube Shorts without the app.

Use Your Tablet Browser

The easiest way to watch Shorts on a tablet without the app is by visiting the YouTube mobile site.

  1. Open your tablet’s browser app and go to YouTube.
  2. Tap the “Shorts” button at the bottom of the screen.
  3. You’ll immediately be teleported to YouTube’s Shorts feed.

Search for Shorts Directly

If the random Shorts YouTube placed on your feed aren’t to your liking, you can also search for other videos.

  1. Open YouTube in your tablet browser.
  2. Type “#shorts” in YouTube’s search bar.
  3. Add “+” and any topic or creator you want to search.
  4. Tap any result that has the “Shorts” icon in its corner to enter the Shorts feed.

Cut It Short

While accessing Shorts may have been a challenge in the infancy of this feature, you can now watch this content on any device without even downloading the YouTube app. All you need to discover how to watch YouTube Shorts without the app is a working browser. You can get lost in the endless feed of short videos. Whether you just want to browse or you’re looking for the creations of your favorite YouTuber, the instructions above will help you find what you’re interested in.

What do you think about YouTube Shorts? Do you think this feature should have its own dedicated app? Let us know in the comments section below.

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