Tutorial [Tutorial] How to run YouTube videos through the WiiU browser (after dropped support)

ShadowOne333

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Good day, Temp!

If you are one of the oddballs around and are still using your WiiU in 2020, then chances are you are most likely still using because of the neat browser the WiiU had, and its ability to stream videos directly to the TV from the browser.

However, starting in mid-June of 2020, YouTube officially dropped all support for the web browser of the WiiU, leaving the only official supported method for playing YouTube videos on the WiiU be through the YouTube App from the eShop, but if you have tried that app before, you know how awful it is, and it's prone to crashing and the inability to do anything else BUT watch the current video, unlike doing it through the browser, which still gave you the ability to use the browser on the WiiU Gamepad for anything else, while the video was being streamed separately to the TV.

The point of this tutorial is to give the users some options to still play their YouTube videos through the browser, despite YouTube officially ending support for it.
With that said, let us begin with the current options we have to still play YouTube videos.

PREPARATIONS

Before beginning, let me mention that you need to modify the current way the browser loads the YouTube page from the Desktop variant to the Mobile variant.
If you try to use the Desktop site, it won't load any videos at all, and it will show up glitched.

To change the default site that loads upon entering YouTube on the browser, type the following in the link textbox of the browser:
https://m.youtube.com/?persist_app=1&app=m

Then, immediately afterwards, close the tab, and try typing "youtube.com".
Now the browser should automatically load the mobile version of YouTube on the browser, you will now be able to see the videos listed in Home, Trending and Subscriptions.
However, this sole change doesn't make the actual videos to play, that's where the following options come into play.

WORKING OPTIONS

The following methods vary in terms of difficulty.
We will begin from easiest to hardest in case some of these options end up not working in the future, and for ease of access to the end-user.

YT Mobile & Android user agentYT Mobile & Embed YT videosYT Mobile, Chrome user agent & force Desktop site for videos only

  1. This method involves forcing the WiiU browser to behave as an Android device.
    To make this work, the following steps are required:

    1. As stated at the beginning of the "Preparations" section, you should make the browser load the mobile version by default with the following link:
      https://m.youtube.com/?persist_app=1&app=m
    2. Open a new tab, and go to the top-right corner of the browser to the Settings option.
    3. Inside Settings, scroll down until you find an option called "User Agent". Change the default user agent to "Android" (Android tablet might work too, but stick to Android unless that option ends up not working in the future).
    4. Now with the user agent set to Android, and YouTube loading in Mobile mode, you can freely open up any video, and the video will start playing automatically once you click on it.

    This is by far the easiest form to currently load YouTube videos in the browser as of July 2020. If you end up having troubles with this method in the future, try one of the other two methods.

    1. This method doesn't require changing the browser's user agent, so you can leave it as the default one (Wii U).
    2. If you have modified the user agent when trying one of the other methods, then open a new tab, and go to the top-right corner of the browser to the Settings option, scroll down until you find an option called "User Agent", and change the default user agent to "Wii U".
    3. As with the previous method, make the browser load the mobile version by default with the following link:
      https://m.youtube.com/?persist_app=1&app=m
    4. Search around for a site that removes ads or makes embed videos, like the ones you see on Temp's news articles.
    5. Copy-paste the video's link into the page that does so, and when the embed video is ready, simply play it and it should automatically begin playing on TV.

    For suggestions on what sites to use to make the embed videos, I mostly use a site called ViewPure.com, others like Embed.ly could work as well.
    If anyone knows of others sites that can embed YouTube videos and works for this method, please let me know so I can add it to this tutorial.

  2. This method is by far the hardest to get YouTube videos (and the first one I stumbled upon when attempting a workaround after YT dropped support the very same day it happened).
    I recommend only using this one in case none of the other two methods works for you.

    1. As with all the other methods, make the browser load the mobile version by default with the following link:
      https://m.youtube.com/?persist_app=1&app=m
    2. Open a new tab, and go to the top-right corner of the browser to the Settings option.
    3. Inside Settings, scroll down until you find an option called "User Agent". Change the default user agent to "Chrome" or "Firefox"
    4. Go to YouTube, and open any video you want in another tab
    5. With the video opened, add "&app=desktop" to the video link. You will see the video trying to load now, but it won't load on its own.
    6. To force the video to play, notice the area where the video is (where the loading circle is moving), and with the touchscreen, click and hold where the circle is until a window pops up.
    7. Select "Play Video on Web Page".
    8. Then, when it starts playing on the in-tab browser, click and hold with the touchscreen again and select "Play Video on Fullscreen".
    9. This will make the video to start playing on the TV, while leaving the browser free for other things of your liking.

    The only drawback on using this method is that sometimes, instead of the video loading normally, you will get an ad to load, and the video doesn't resume automatically after the ad ends, so you are stuck with the ad loading instead of the video. You can sometimes bypass this by refreshing the page, or re-entering the video's link manually, but I struggled with a couple of videos where no matter how many times I reloaded the video, an ad would always play no matter what.
    Perhaps using this method alongside the embed sites mentioned in Method #2 could help with this.

    While this method might sound like a shore to do, once you get the hang of it you can do it really quickly, simply start Youtube on mobile, open the video and add "&app=Desktop" at the end of it, then hold click to force "Play on Fullscreen" and that's it.


FINAL THOUGHTS

For me, having the WiiU Tablet as a menu of sorts to browse online is a life saviour, and still unmatched with any other Android box or Smart TV out there, since it gives you a lot of options and a fast click and browsing method while still seeing the video on your TV, which most other devices don't do.

I do what to find a workaround for Twitch, but given how I don't go to that site as much nor have much interest, I haven't really delved much into it.
But if anyone find a way to get Twitch working again on the WiiU Browser, let me know and I'll add it to this tutorial too.

All in all, the best thing that could happen would be for a revised version of the browser, like an updated version of it to mod the current one that works in original firmware, so we can browse with proper multi-coding support and no more "1035" errors, and also updated SSL and TLS certificates so that more sites load on the WiiU browser.

Either that or a homebrew browser for the WiiU.
Sadly, seeing how the WiiU homebrew scene is pretty much all but dead in the bloom of the Switch scene, it's unlikely to happen.

I do hope these workaround help with all those WiiU users out there who still use their WiiU consistently as a streaming media.
Best of wishes, and happy WiiU streaming!
 
Last edited by ShadowOne333,

huma_dawii

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Good day, Temp!

If you are one of the oddballs around and are still using your WiiU in 2020, then chances are you are most likely still using because of the neat browser the WiiU had, and its ability to stream videos directly to the TV from the browser.

However, starting in mid-June of 2020, YouTube officially dropped all support for the web browser of the WiiU, leaving the only official supported method for playing YouTube videos on the WiiU be through the YouTube App from the eShop, but if you have tried that app before, you know how awful it is, and it's prone to crashing and the inability to do anything else BUT watch the current video, unlike doing it through the browser, which still gave you the ability to use the browser on the WiiU Gamepad for anything else, while the video was being streamed separately to the TV.

The point of this tutorial is to give the users some options to still play their YouTube videos through the browser, despite YouTube officially ending support for it.
With that said, let us begin with the current options we have to still play YouTube videos.

PREPARATIONS

Before beginning, let me mention that you need to modify the current way the browser loads the YouTube page from the Desktop variant to the Mobile variant.
If you try to use the Desktop site, it won't load any videos at all, and it will show up glitched.

To change the default site that loads upon entering YouTube on the browser, type the following in the link textbox of the browser:
https://m.youtube.com/?persist_app=1&app=m

Then, immediately afterwards, close the tab, and try typing "youtube.com".
Now the browser should automatically load the mobile version of YouTube on the browser, you will now be able to see the videos listed in Home, Trending and Subscriptions.
However, this sole change doesn't make the actual videos to play, that's where the following options come into play.

WORKING OPTIONS

The following methods vary in terms of difficulty.
We will begin from easiest to hardest in case some of these options end up not working in the future, and for ease of access to the end-user.

YT Mobile & Android user agentYT Mobile & Embed YT videosYT Mobile, Chrome user agent & force Desktop site for videos only

  1. This method involves forcing the WiiU browser to behave as an Android device.
    To make this work, the following steps are required:

    1. As stated at the beginning of the "Preparations" section, you should make the browser load the mobile version by default with the following link:
      https://m.youtube.com/?persist_app=1&app=m
    2. Open a new tab, and go to the top-right corner of the browser to the Settings option.
    3. Inside Settings, scroll down until you find an option called "User Agent". Change the default user agent to "Android" (Android tablet might work too, but stick to Android unless that option ends up not working in the future).
    4. Now with the user agent set to Android, and YouTube loading in Mobile mode, you can freely open up any video, and the video will start playing automatically once you click on it.

    This is by far the easiest form to currently load YouTube videos in the browser as of July 2020. If you end up having troubles with this method in the future, try one of the other two methods.

    1. This method doesn't require changing the browser's user agent, so you can leave it as the default one (Wii U).
    2. If you have modified the user agent when trying one of the other methods, then open a new tab, and go to the top-right corner of the browser to the Settings option, scroll down until you find an option called "User Agent", and change the default user agent to "Wii U".
    3. As with the previous method, make the browser load the mobile version by default with the following link:
      https://m.youtube.com/?persist_app=1&app=m
    4. Search around for a site that removes ads or makes embed videos, like the ones you see on Temp's news articles.
    5. Copy-paste the video's link into the page that does so, and when the embed video is ready, simply play it and it should automatically begin playing on TV.

    For suggestions on what sites to use to make the embed videos, I mostly use a site called ViewPure.com, others like Embed.ly could work as well.
    If anyone knows of others sites that can embed YouTube videos and works for this method, please let me know so I can add it to this tutorial.

  2. This method is by far the hardest to get YouTube videos (and the first one I stumbled upon when attempting a workaround after YT dropped support the very same day it happened).
    I recommend only using this one in case none of the other two methods works for you.

    1. As with all the other methods, make the browser load the mobile version by default with the following link:
      https://m.youtube.com/?persist_app=1&app=m
    2. Open a new tab, and go to the top-right corner of the browser to the Settings option.
    3. Inside Settings, scroll down until you find an option called "User Agent". Change the default user agent to "Chrome" or "Firefox"
    4. Go to YouTube, and open any video you want in another tab
    5. With the video opened, add "&app=desktop" to the video link. You will see the video trying to load now, but it won't load on its own.
    6. To force the video to play, notice the area where the video is (where the loading circle is moving), and with the touchscreen, click and hold where the circle is until a window pops up.
    7. Select "Play Video on Web Page".
    8. Then, when it starts playing on the in-tab browser, click and hold with the touchscreen again and select "Play Video on Fullscreen".
    9. This will make the video to start playing on the TV, while leaving the browser free for other things of your liking.

    The only drawback on using this method is that sometimes, instead of the video loading normally, you will get an ad to load, and the video doesn't resume automatically after the ad ends, so you are stuck with the ad loading instead of the video. You can sometimes bypass this by refreshing the page, or re-entering the video's link manually, but I struggled with a couple of videos where no matter how many times I reloaded the video, an ad would always play no matter what.
    Perhaps using this method alongside the embed sites mentioned in Method #2 could help with this.

    While this method might sound like a shore to do, once you get the hang of it you can do it really quickly, simply start Youtube on mobile, open the video and add "&app=Desktop" at the end of it, then hold click to force "Play on Fullscreen" and that's it.


FINAL THOUGHTS

For me, having the WiiU Tablet as a menu of sorts to browse online is a life saviour, and still unmatched with any other Android box or Smart TV out there, since it gives you a lot of options and a fast click and browsing method while still seeing the video on your TV, which most other devices don't do.

I do what to find a workaround for Twitch, but given how I don't go to that site as much nor have much interest, I haven't really delved much into it.
But if anyone find a way to get Twitch working again on the WiiU Browser, let me know and I'll add it to this tutorial too.

All in all, the best thing that could happen would be for a revised version of the browser, like an updated version of it to mod the current one that works in original firmware, so we can browse with proper multi-coding support and no more "1035" errors, and also updated SSL and TLS certificates so that more sites load on the WiiU browser.

Either that or a homebrew browser for the WiiU.
Sadly, seeing how the WiiU homebrew scene is pretty much all but dead in the bloom of the Switch scene, it's unlikely to happen.

I do hope these workaround help with all those WiiU users out there who still use their WiiU consistently as a streaming media.
Best of wishes, and happy WiiU streaming!
Thank you sir. Well done!
 

Centrix

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So I'm a little confused about this whole youtube thing. I can still use youtube on my wii u fine, yeah that stopped supporting it, so. It still updates all my channels when new videos become available, so whats the problem? I'm just a little baffled by why this seems to be an issue.
 
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huma_dawii

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So I'm a little confused about this whole youtube thing. I can still use youtube on my wii u fine, yeah that stopped supporting it, so. It still updates all my channels when new videos become available, so whats the problem? I'm just a little baffled by why this seems to be an issue.

It doesn't work on the browser anymore.

Only the app.
 
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ShadowOne333

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So I'm a little confused about this whole youtube thing. I can still use youtube on my wii u fine, yeah that stopped supporting it, so. It still updates all my channels when new videos become available, so whats the problem? I'm just a little baffled by why this seems to be an issue.
You just confirmed a suspicion I was having.
It seems the thing is not standard all around, but they are rolling it slowly.

I also had the message that they were going to stop supporting the browser in a yellow banner when you entered the site, but starting last week, the videos just plain stopped loading. YouTube didn't respond at all, so that's why I resorted to this.

It won't be long before yours starts doing so as well.
 

huma_dawii

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Agree.
It's the easiest and most convenient to use.
I do hope this one lasts long.

Do you think something could be done to have the browser User Agent as Android at all times?

I found out that you add that mobile address for youtube on your bookmarks and then have pureview also there, you can still watch videos in HD without changing the user agent at all, thank you so much <3

Long Life to the Wii U

EDIT:

So the Wii U is still clearly compatible with YouTube, so why the F. is Google killing it?
 
Last edited by huma_dawii,

ShadowOne333

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Do you think something could be done to have the browser User Agent as Android at all times?

I found out that you add that mobile address for youtube on your bookmarks and then have pureview also there, you can still watch videos in HD without changing the user agent at all, thank you so much <3

Long Life to the Wii U

EDIT:

So the Wii U is still clearly compatible with YouTube, so why the F. is Google killing it?
To be honest I'm not sure, maybe you could do it from a configuration file or something, but I'm not sure where that is for the browser on the WiiU's NAND.

Yep, actually the method you mention is the one I tend to use, although the Android one seems to work nicely for HD videos as well. The only one that looks kinda bad is the last one, which I really reserved as worst case scenario.

Google's being Google, if they can't track shit they don't support it lol
 

HiroshiYamauchi

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Do you think something could be done to have the browser User Agent as Android at all times?

I found out that you add that mobile address for youtube on your bookmarks and then have pureview also there, you can still watch videos in HD without changing the user agent at all, thank you so much <3

Long Life to the Wii U

EDIT:

So the Wii U is still clearly compatible with YouTube, so why the F. is Google killing it?

The Wii U's web browser is old and hasn't been updated for a long time, so i suppose it's a security concern for Google, i guess...
 

pleasehelpme2

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The YouTube History or the Browser's History? If its the latter, then yes as long as you did not delete it in the past.
I mean the youtube history. Its quite inconvenient to go ahead and watch all the same videos again, you know what I mean.
 
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