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How to Skip Back and Forward 10 Seconds in YouTube and Other Apps

YouTube on an iPhone in front of a laptop
Mykolastock/Shutterstock.com

Have you ever looked for quick 10-second Rewind and Fast Forward buttons in the YouTube app for iPhone, Android, or iPad? There are no visible buttons, but there’s a hidden trick. It also works in Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, and many other video apps.

Rewind or Fast Forward Ten Seconds in YouTube

Rewind by double-tapping anywhere in the lefthand side of the video.

In the YouTube app, double-tap anywhere on the left half of a video while it’s playing to rewind, or double-tap anywhere on the right half of the picture to skip ahead. Each time you double-tap, YouTube will seek 10 seconds ahead or back.

Keep tapping to go farther back or ahead. For example, if you tap the left half of the video three times, YouTube will go back 20 seconds. If you tap the right half of the video four times, YouTube will jump ahead 30 seconds. YouTube will show you how many seconds it’s fast-forwarding or rewinding on the screen.

The Seek bar at the bottom of a video is still a useful way to scroll through a long video. But, once you’ve skipped to about the right place, you can perform a few taps to quickly make adjustments.

On a computer with a keyboard, you can press the J and L keys while using YouTube to rewind and fast forward 10 seconds. YouTube supports quite a few keyboard shortcuts.

Netflix, Hulu, HBO Now, Disney+, and More

You can rewind or skip ahead by using the seek bar.

This trick is particularly useful in the YouTube app, as YouTube doesn’t offer visible “skip ahead” and “skip back” buttons. But it works in many video apps on your phone. Even in apps that do offer visible buttons, it can be faster to skim through a video by double-tapping on that large video player instead of tapping on those tiny buttons.

Here are some apps it works in:

  • Netflix: Double-tap at left or right side of a video while it’s playing to seek back or forward 10 seconds, just as if you tapped the normal skip ahead or back buttons in Netflix.
  • Hulu: In Hulu, the buttons skip back 10 seconds and ahead 30 seconds. Double-tap at the left side of the screen to go back 10 seconds, or double-tap at the right side to jump ahead 30 seconds.
  • Disney+: Double-tap at the left or the right side of the screen to go back or forward 10 seconds.

This doesn’t work in the HBO Now app, unfortunately. The app does have buttons for going back 10 seconds and ahead 10 seconds, so you can tap those instead. Most apps do have those visible buttons. The YouTube app hides these buttons, and that’s very unusual.

We haven’t tried trick in every single app out there, but it’s a common trick that surely works in many more video players. It’s worth a try whenever you’re watching videos on a phone or tablet.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem to work in browsers like Safari on the iPhone and iPad and Google Chrome on Android.

Chris Hoffman Chris Hoffman
Chris Hoffman is Editor in Chief of How-To Geek. He's written about technology for nearly a decade and was a PCWorld columnist for two years. Chris has written for The New York Times, been interviewed as a technology expert on TV stations like Miami's NBC 6, and had his work covered by news outlets like the BBC. Since 2011, Chris has written over 2,000 articles that have been read more than 500 million times---and that's just here at How-To Geek.
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