YouTube

YouTube Embedded Players and Player Parameters

Contents

  1. Overview
  2. Embedding a YouTube player
  3. Selecting content to play
  4. Parameters
  5. Revision history

Overview

This document explains how to embed a YouTube player in your application and also defines the parameters that are available in the YouTube embedded player.

YouTube players can be embedded in a web page using either an <iframe> tag or an <object> tag. By appending parameters to the IFrame or SWF URL, you can customize the playback experience in your application. For example, you can automatically play videos using the autoplay parameter or cause a video to play repeatedly using the loop parameter. You can also enable the JavaScript API for the player with the enablejsapi parameter.

This page currently defines all parameters supported in any YouTube embedded player. Each parameter definition identifies the players that support the corresponding parameter.

Note: To allow room for critical player functionality, players must be at least 200px by 200px.

Embedding a YouTube player

Best practice: IFrame embeds are the recommended method for embedding a YouTube player because the IFrame will select the appropriate player based on the client's capabilities and available YouTube file formats.

You can use any of the following methods to embed a YouTube player in your application and specify player parameters. Note that the instructions below demonstrate how to embed a player that loads a single video. The following section explains how to configure your player to load other types of content, such as playlists and search results.

  • IFrame embeds using <iframe> tags

    Define an <iframe> tag in your application in which the src URL specifies the content that the player will load as well as any other player parameters you want to set. The <iframe> tag's height and width parameters specify the dimensions of the player.

    If you are creating the <iframe> element yourself (rather than using the IFrame Player API to create it), you can append player parameters directly to the end of the URL. The URL has the following format:

    http://www.youtube.com/embed/VIDEO_ID

    The <iframe> tag below would load a 640x390px player that would play the YouTube video M7lc1UVf-VE. Since the URL sets the autoplay parameter to 1, the video would play automatically once the player has loaded.

    <iframe id="ytplayer" type="text/html" width="640" height="390"
      src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/M7lc1UVf-VE?autoplay=1&origin=http://example.com"
      frameborder="0"/>
    
  • IFrame embeds using the IFrame Player API

    Follow the IFrame Player API instructions to insert a video player in your web page or application after the Player API's JavaScript code has loaded. The second parameter in the constructor for the video player is an object that specifies player options. Within that object, the playerVars property identifies player parameters.

    The HTML and JavaScript code below shows a simple example that inserts a YouTube player into the page element that has an id value of ytplayer. The onYouTubePlayerAPIReady() function specified here is called automatically when the IFrame Player API code has loaded. This code does not define any player parameters and also does not define other event handlers.

    <div id="ytplayer"></div>
    
    <script>
      // Load the IFrame Player API code asynchronously.
      var tag = document.createElement('script');
      tag.src = "https://www.youtube.com/player_api";
      var firstScriptTag = document.getElementsByTagName('script')[0];
      firstScriptTag.parentNode.insertBefore(tag, firstScriptTag);
    
      // Replace the 'ytplayer' element with an <iframe> and
      // YouTube player after the API code downloads.
      var player;
      function onYouTubePlayerAPIReady() {
        player = new YT.Player('ytplayer', {
          height: '390',
          width: '640',
          videoId: 'M7lc1UVf-VE'
        });
      }
    </script>
    
  • AS3 (and AS2*) object embeds

    * Note: The AS2 Player API is deprecated.

    Object embeds use an <object> tag to specify the player's dimensions and parameters. The sample code below demonstrates how to use an object embed to load an AS3 player that automatically plays the same video as the previous two examples.

    <object width="640" height="390">
      <param name="movie"
             value="https://www.youtube.com/v/M7lc1UVf-VE?version=3&autoplay=1"></param>
      <param name="allowScriptAccess" value="always"></param>
      <embed src="https://www.youtube.com/v/M7lc1UVf-VE?version=3&autoplay=1"
             type="application/x-shockwave-flash"
             allowscriptaccess="always"
             width="640" height="390"></embed>
    </object>
    

Selecting content to play

You can configure your embedded player to load a video, a playlist, a user's uploaded videos, or search results for a particular query. However, options other than loading a single video are only supported in AS3 object embeds and in IFrame embeds that load the AS3 player. (IFrame embeds could also load the HTML5 player.)

The following list explains these options:

  • Loading a video

    For an IFrame embed, the YouTube video ID for the video that you want to load is specified in the IFrame's src URL. For an AS3 or AS2 object embed, the video ID is specified in the player's SWF URL.

    IFrame embed:
    http://www.youtube.com/embed/VIDEO_ID
    
    Embedded AS3 player:
    http://www.youtube.com/v/VIDEO_ID?version=3
    
    Chromeless AS3 player:
    http://www.youtube.com/apiplayer?video_id=VIDEO_ID&version=3
    

    If you are using the YouTube Data API (v3), you can programmatically construct these URLs by retrieving video IDs from search results, playlist item resources, video resources, or other resources. After obtaining a video ID, replace the VIDEO_ID text in the URLs above with that value to create the player URL.

  • Loading a playlist

    Set the listType player parameter to playlist. In addition, set the list player parameter to the YouTube playlist ID that you want to load.

    http://www.youtube.com/embed?listType=playlist&list=PLAYLIST_ID

    Note that you need to prepend the playlist ID with the letters PL as shown in the following example:

    http://www.youtube.com/embed?listType=playlist&list=PLC77007E23FF423C6

    If you are using the YouTube Data API (v3), you can programmatically construct these URLs by retrieving playlist IDs from search results, channel resources, or activity resources. After obtaining a playlist ID, replace the PLAYLIST_ID text in the URL above with that value.

  • Loading a user's uploaded videos

    Set the listType player parameter to user_uploads. In addition, set the list player parameter to the YouTube username whose uploaded videos you want to load.

    http://www.youtube.com/embed?listType=user_uploads&list=USERNAME
  • Loading search results for a specified query

    Set the listType player parameter to search. In addition, set the list player parameter to the query term for which you want the player to load search results.

    http://www.youtube.com/embed?listType=search&list=QUERY

Parameters

All of the following parameters are optional. The list shows parameters supported in any YouTube embedded player. If all players do not support a particular parameter, that parameter's definition will identify the players that do support it. Note that these parameters are only officially supported by the embedded player, but a subset of them may also work with other players such as the playlist player.

Note: IFrame embeds can load either the HTML5 player or the AS3 player. Though some parameters are not supported in both players, an IFrame embed that loads the AS3 player will support all parameters that work with that player and ignore all other parameters. Similarly, an IFrame embed that loads the HTML5 player will support all parameters that work with that player while ignoring all other parameters.

For example, the HTML5 player does not currently support the cc_load_policy parameter, but you can still specify that parameter when creating an IFrame embed. If the embed loads the AS3 player, the player will support the parameter, and if the embed loads the HTML5 player, the player will ignore it.

All YouTube player parameters

autohide (supported players: AS3, AS2, HTML5)
Values: 2 (default), 1, and 0. This parameter indicates whether the video controls will automatically hide after a video begins playing. The default behavior (autohide=2) is for the video progress bar to fade out while the player controls (play button, volume control, etc.) remain visible.

  • If this parameter is set to 1, then the video progress bar and the player controls will slide out of view a couple of seconds after the video starts playing. They will only reappear if the user moves her mouse over the video player or presses a key on her keyboard.
  • If this parameter is set to 0, the video progress bar and the video player controls will be visible throughout the video and in fullscreen.
autoplay (supported players: AS3, AS2, HTML5)
Values: 0 or 1. Default is 0. Sets whether or not the initial video will autoplay when the player loads.

cc_load_policy (supported players: AS3, AS2)
Values: 1. Default is based on user preference. Setting to 1 will cause closed captions to be shown by default, even if the user has turned captions off.

color (supported players: AS3, HTML5)
This parameter specifies the color that will be used in the player's video progress bar to highlight the amount of the video that the viewer has already seen. Valid parameter values are red and white, and, by default, the player will use the color red in the video progress bar. See the YouTube API blog for more information about color options.

Note: Setting the color parameter to white will disable the modestbranding option.

controls (supported players: AS3, HTML5)
Values: 0, 1, or 2. Default is 1. This parameter indicates whether the video player controls will display. For IFrame embeds that load a Flash player, it also defines when the controls display in the player as well as when the player will load:

  • controls=0 – Player controls do not display in the player. For IFrame embeds, the Flash player loads immediately.
  • controls=1 – Player controls display in the player. For IFrame embeds, the controls display immediately and the Flash player also loads immediately.
  • controls=2 – Player controls display in the player. For IFrame embeds, the controls display and the Flash player loads after the user initiates the video playback.

Note: The parameter values 1 and 2 are intended to provide an identical user experience, but controls=2 provides a performance improvement over controls=1 for IFrame embeds. Currently, the two values still produce some visual differences in the player, such as the video title's font size. However, when the difference between the two values becomes completely transparent to the user, the default parameter value may change from 1 to 2.

disablekb (supported players: AS3, AS2)
Values: 0 or 1. Default is 0. Setting to 1 will disable the player keyboard controls. Keyboard controls are as follows:
     Spacebar: Play / Pause
     Arrow Left: Jump back 10% in the current video
     Arrow Right: Jump ahead 10% in the current video
     Arrow Up: Volume up
     Arrow Down: Volume Down

enablejsapi (supported players: AS3, AS2, HTML5)
Values: 0 or 1. Default is 0. Setting this to 1 will enable the Javascript API. For more information on the Javascript API and how to use it, see the JavaScript API documentation.

end (supported players: AS3)
Values: A positive integer. This parameter specifies the time, measured in seconds from the start of the video, when the player should stop playing the video. Note that the time is measured from the beginning of the video and not from either the value of the start player parameter or the startSeconds parameter, which is used in YouTube Player API functions for loading or queueing a video.

fs (supported players: AS3, AS2)
Values: 0 or 1. For the AS3 player, the default value is 1, which causes the fullscreen button to display. Setting this parameter to 0 prevents the fullscreen button from displaying.

In the AS2 player, the default value is 0. Setting the value to 1 enables the fullscreen button in the embedded player and does not affect the chromeless player. The fullscreen option will not work if you load the YouTube player into another SWF. Note that, for the AS2 player, you must include some extra arguments to your embed code for this to work. The bold text in the following example is required to enable fullscreen functionality:
<object width="560" height="315">
<param name="movie" value="https://youtube.googleapis.com/v/M7lc1UVf-VE?version=2&fs=1"</param>
<param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param>
<param name="allowScriptAccess" value="always"></param>
<embed src="https://youtube.googleapis.com/v/M7lc1UVf-VE?version=2&fs=1"
  type="application/x-shockwave-flash"
  allowfullscreen="true"
  allowscriptaccess="always"
  width="560" height="315">
</embed>
</object>
iv_load_policy (supported players: AS3, AS2, HTML5)
Values: 1 or 3. Default is 1. Setting to 1 will cause video annotations to be shown by default, whereas setting to 3 will cause video annotations to not be shown by default.

list (supported players: AS3)
The list parameter, in conjunction with the listType parameter, identifies the content that will load in the player.
  • If the listType parameter value is search, then the list parameter value specifies the search query.
  • If the listType parameter value is user_uploads, then the list parameter value identifies the YouTube channel whose uploaded videos will be loaded.
  • If the listType parameter value is playlist, then the list parameter value specifies a YouTube playlist ID. In the parameter value, you need to prepend the playlist ID with the letters PL as shown in the example below.
    http://www.youtube.com/embed?listType=playlist&list=PLC77007E23FF423C6
Note: If you specify values for the list and listType parameters, the IFrame embed URL does not need to specify a video ID.

listType (supported players: AS3)
The listType parameter, in conjunction with the list parameter, identifies the content that will load in the player. Valid parameter values are playlist, search, and user_uploads.

If you specify values for the list and listType parameters, the IFrame embed URL does not need to specify a video ID.

loop (supported players: AS3, HTML5)
Values: 0 or 1. Default is 0. In the case of a single video player, a setting of 1 will cause the player to play the initial video again and again. In the case of a playlist player (or custom player), the player will play the entire playlist and then start again at the first video.

Note: This parameter has limited support in the AS3 player and in IFrame embeds, which could load either the AS3 or HTML5 player. Currently, the loop parameter only works in the AS3 player when used in conjunction with the playlist parameter. To loop a single video, set the loop parameter value to 1 and set the playlist parameter value to the same video ID already specified in the Player API URL:
http://www.youtube.com/v/VIDEO_ID?version=3&loop=1&playlist=VIDEO_ID
modestbranding (supported players: AS3, HTML5)
This parameter lets you use a YouTube player that does not show a YouTube logo. Set the parameter value to 1 to prevent the YouTube logo from displaying in the control bar. Note that a small YouTube text label will still display in the upper-right corner of a paused video when the user's mouse pointer hovers over the player.

origin (supported players: AS3, HTML5)
This parameter provides an extra security measure for the IFrame API and is only supported for IFrame embeds. If you are using the IFrame API, which means you are setting the enablejsapi parameter value to 1, you should always specify your domain as the origin parameter value.

playerapiid (supported players: AS3, AS2)
Value can be any alphanumeric string. This setting is used in conjunction with the JavaScript API. See the JavaScript API documentation for details.

playlist (supported players: AS3, HTML5)
Value is a comma-separated list of video IDs to play. If you specify a value, the first video that plays will be the VIDEO_ID specified in the URL path, and the videos specified in the playlist parameter will play thereafter.

playsinline (supported players: HTML5)
This parameter controls whether videos play inline or fullscreen in an HTML5 player on iOS. Valid values are:
  • 0: This value causes fullscreen playback. This is currently the default value, though the default is subject to change.
  • 1: This value causes inline playback.
rel (supported players: AS3, AS2, HTML5)
Values: 0 or 1. Default is 1. This parameter indicates whether the player should show related videos when playback of the initial video ends.

showinfo (supported players: AS3, AS2, HTML5)
Values: 0 or 1. The parameter's default value is 1. If you set the parameter value to 0, then the player will not display information like the video title and uploader before the video starts playing.

If the player is loading a playlist, and you explicitly set the parameter value to 1, then, upon loading, the player will also display thumbnail images for the videos in the playlist. Note that this functionality is only supported for the AS3 player since that is the only player that can load a playlist.

start (supported players: AS3, AS2, HTML5)
Values: A positive integer. This parameter causes the player to begin playing the video at the given number of seconds from the start of the video. Note that similar to the seekTo function, the player will look for the closest keyframe to the time you specify. This means that sometimes the play head may seek to just before the requested time, usually no more than around two seconds.

theme (supported players: AS3, AS2, HTML5)
This parameter indicates whether the embedded player will display player controls (like a play button or volume control) within a dark or light control bar. Valid parameter values are dark and light, and, by default, the player will display player controls using the dark theme. See the YouTube API blog for more information about the dark and light themes.

Deprecated parameters only used in the AS2 Player API

The following parameters were only supported for the AS2 Player API, which has been deprecated:

border (supported players: AS2)
Values: 0 or 1. Default is 0. Setting to 1 enables a border around the entire video player. The border's primary color can be set via the color1 parameter, and a secondary color can be set by the color2 parameter.

color1, color2 (supported players: AS2)
Values: Any RGB value in hexadecimal format. color1 is the primary border color, and color2 is the video control bar background color and secondary border color.

egm (supported players: AS2)
Values: 0 or 1. Default is 0. Setting to 1 enables the Enhanced Genie Menu. This behavior causes the genie menu (if present) to appear when the user's mouse enters the video display area, as opposed to only appearing when the menu button is pressed.

hd (supported players: AS2)
Values: 0 or 1. Default is 0. Setting to 1 enables HD playback by default. This has no effect on the Chromeless Player. This also has no effect if an HD version of the video is not available. If you enable this option, keep in mind that users with a slower connection may have a sub-optimal experience unless they turn off HD. You should ensure your player is large enough to display the video in its native resolution.

showsearch (supported players: AS2)
Values: 0 or 1. Default is 1. Setting to 0 disables the search box from displaying when the video is minimized. Note that if the rel parameter is set to 0 then the search box will also be disabled, regardless of the value of showsearch.

Revision history

January 28, 2014

  • The playsinline parameter controls whether videos play inline or fullscreen in an HTML5 player on iOS. Setting the value to 1 causes inline playback.

  • The Selecting content to play section has been updated to explain how to find YouTube video IDs and playlist IDs using the YouTube Data API (v3) rather than the older API version.

  • The controls parameter's definition has been updated to reflect the fact that the parameter value only affects the time that the Flash player actually loads in IFrame embeds. In addition, for IFrame embeds, the parameter value also determines when the controls display in the player. If you set the parameter's value to 2, then the controls display and the Flash player loads after the user initiates the video playback.

May 10, 2013

This update contains the following changes:

July 20, 2012

This update contains the following changes:

  • The definition of the controls parameter has been updated to reflect support for a parameter value of 2 and to explain that, for AS3 players, the parameter value determines the time when the Flash player actually loads. If the controls parameter is set to 0 or 1, the Flash player loads immediately. If the parameter value is 2, the Flash player does not load until the video playback is initiated.

June 5, 2012

This update contains the following changes:

  • The HTML5 player now supports the color, modestbranding, and rel parameters, and the definitions for these parameters have been updated accordingly.

  • The definition of the showinfo parameter has been updated to explain how that if the player is loading a playlist, and you explicitly set the parameter value to 1, then, upon loading, the player will also display thumbnail images for the videos in the playlist. Note that this functionality is only supported for the AS3 player since that is the only player that can load a playlist.

May 4, 2012

This update contains the following changes:

  • The showinfo parameter's definition has been updated to reflect the fact that the HTML5 player supports this parameter.

May 3, 2012

This update contains the following changes:

  • The new end parameter specifies the time, measured in seconds from the start of the video, when the player should stop playing a video. Note that the time when playback is stopped is measured from the beginning of the video and not from the value of either the start player parameter or the startSeconds parameter, which is used in YouTube Player API functions for loading or queueing a video.

March 29, 2012

This update contains the following changes:

  • The new Embedding a YouTube player section explains different ways to embed a YouTube player in your application. This section covers manual IFrame embeds, IFrame embeds that use the IFrame Player API, and AS3 and AS2 object embeds. This section incorporates information from the old Example usage section, which has been removed.

  • The new Selecting content to play section explains how to configure the player to load a video, a playlist, search results for a specified query, or uploaded videos for a specified user.

  • The new list and listType parameters let you specify the content that the player should load. You can specify a playlist, a search query, or a particular user's uploaded videos.

  • The definitions of the fs and rel parameters have been updated to more clearly explain the default parameter values for the AS3 player.

  • The border, color1, egm, hd, and showsearch parameters, which are all only supported for the deprecated AS2 Player API, have been moved to a new section named deprecated parameters only used in the AS2 Player API.

  • The document no longer provides a way to filter the parameter list to only display parameters supported in either the AS3, AS2, or HTML5 player. Instead, each parameter definition has been updated to identify the players that support that parameter.

August 11, 2011

This update contains the following changes:

  • The new theme and color parameters let you customize the appearance of the embedded player's player controls. See the YouTube API blog for more information.

June 8, 2011

This update contains the following changes:

  • The new modestbranding parameter lets you use a YouTube player that does not show a YouTube logo. As of this release, the parameter was only supported for the AS3 embedded player and for IFrame embeds that loaded the AS3 player. As of June 5, 2012, the HTML5 player also supported this parameter.

February 14, 2011

This update contains the following changes:

  • The documentation has been updated to note that the AS2 Player API has been deprecated. The deprecation of the AS2 Player API was actually announced on October 14, 2009.

February 3, 2011

This update contains the following changes:

  • The documentation has been updated to identify parameters supported in the HTML5 (IFrame) embedded player.

  • The document now displays all of the parameters supported in any of YouTube's embedded players (HTML5, AS3, AS2).

  • The following parameters are supported in the AS2 player but have been deprecated for the newer AS3 and HTML5 players: border, color1, color2, egm, hd, and showsearch.

    In addition, the loop parameter has limited support in the AS3 player and in IFrame embeds, which could load either an AS3 or HTML player. Currently, the loop parameter only works in the AS3 player when used in conjunction with the playlist parameter. To loop a single video, set the loop parameter to 1 and set the playlist parameter value to the same video ID already specified in the Player API URL:

    http://www.youtube.com/v/VIDEO_ID?version=3&loop=1&playlist=VIDEO_ID

    Similarly, the controls and playlist parameters are supported in the AS3 and HTML5 players but are not and will not be supported in the AS2 player.

    As noted above, IFrame embeds can load either an AS3 or HTML5 player. Though some parameters are not supported in both players, an IFrame embed that loads the AS3 player will support all parameters that work with that player and ignore all other parameters. Similarly, an IFrame embed that loads the HTML5 player will support all parameters that work with that player while ignoring all other parameters.

  • The parameter list has been updated to include the autohide parameter, which indicates whether the player's video controls will automatically hide after a video begins playing.

  • The parameter list has been updated to include the controls parameter, which indicates whether the player's video controls will display at all. (Player controls do display by default.)

  • The parameter list has been updated to include the playlist parameter, which specifies a comma-separated list of video IDs to play.

  • The definition of the fs has been updated to note that the fullscreen option will not work if you load the YouTube player into another SWF.

  • The example at the end of the document has been updated to use the embedded AS3 player instead of the embedded AS2 player. The parameters used in the example have also been updated to only include parameters that the AS3 player supports.

    In addition, the instructions for constructing the URLs that contain player parameters have been updated to reflect the URL formats used by the AS3 and AS2 embedded and chromeless players as well as by the HTML5 player.

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