13 December 2011

Thumbnails in YouTube’s progress bar

YouTube progress bar thumbnailsWhen playing back videos on , you are probably familiar with the small tooltip that shows up while hovering over the progress bar to help you jump to a specific time in the video. It looks like the tooltip is enhanced with a thumbnail of the corresponding video frame, to give a preview of the section you will be taken to. The new feature is available with the Flash-based player and only on some videos; it’s hard to say how there were chosen, but the thumbnail generation is probably an ongoing process that will be rolled out to all videos in the future.

Update: And here is the official announcement, a couple of months later.


  1. Hi George, This is a wonderful tip! I'm watching a video now from the YouTube partner channel that discusses the updates. Most of them apply to everyone not just partners.

  2. Wow, that's a really long video! :)
    But it looks interesting, I will watch it sometime later. Thanks for sharing it, Ileane!

  3. Hi, well, this small "tooltip" preview-video-frame which pops-up while hovering the mouse over a point in youtube's video progress bar, suddenly, DISAPPEARED! In fact, didn;t disappeared at all, but it shows as a small BLACK rectangle frame. No preview! I can't think of anything I did to mihjt have caused that. :\
    (May be the recent update of flashplayer for Mozilla FF).
    Is there some remedy/solution to it?