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How to Add Chapter Markers to YouTube Progress Bar?

YouTube now support chapters in video, making it easy to navigate long videos.

YouTube now makes it easier to navigate through long videos with the help of segmented progress bar that shows chapters. This feature works all existing and new videos which have a valid timestamp in its description. This means that the uploader doesn’t need to mark chapters in the video manually. YouTube chapter feature is still in experiment so we are not sure whether it is to stay. Regardless follow the steps below to add chapters to your YouTube videos.

The Correct Way to Add Timestamps in Description for YouTube Chapters to work

YouTube now shows segmented progress bar with chapters extracted from the youtube description
YouTube’s new segmented progress bar and revamped player controls panel which also shows the chapter title

In order to get the chapters to be displayed on your videos, you have to add a valid timestamp description. And here is how you do that,

  • Add the timestamp preferably in the format Timestamp - Title
  • Make sure to begin the timestamp at 00:00
  • There should be atleast 2 timestamps and atmost 25

For example,

00:00 – Introduction
08:21 – Chapter 1
20:00 – Chapter 2
28:45 – Outro

YouTube chapter support works fine in the mobile application as well so go ahead and update your videos! Check this sample video.

YouTube Chapter Support for Desktop Players

IINA for mac supports YouTube chapters
IINA for mac displaying the YouTube video chapters

It is by surprise I found that IINA, the modern media player for macOS shows these YouTube chapters with no extra setups. On the other hand, VLC doesn’t show chapters for YouTube videos at least on my mac version. Also, I have tested with downloaded YouTube videos but both players couldn’t find any chapter markups in it. And it makes sense because the video description could be edited more often and updating the video meta tag every time the description gets modified seems unnecessary. I guess we will have to wait until YouTube officially announces this feature for more information.

Read: Enable PiP mode in YouTube videos with IINA

Meanwhile you can follow this Reddit thread for new community discoveries.

Shan Eapen Koshy

Shan Eapen Koshy is a technology enthusiast from Kerala, India. He has a particular interest in discovering new workflows, automating repetitive works, and trying out new tech.

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