YouTube has started rolling out AI-generated summaries dubbed "AI auto-generated summaries" on both search and watch pages for a small subset of primarily English videos. The goal is to provide users with a quick overview of what each video covers so they can decide if it's worth watching.
The summaries are generated by AI and do not replace creator-written descriptions. Viewers selected for the experiment may see a couple sentences below the video title and channel name that summarize the main topics and points covered in the video content.
YouTube says this is part of their ongoing efforts to experiment with new tools that enhance the user experience. However, the feature is only being tested with a limited number of videos and accounts at this time before considering a wider launch.
The announcement comes on the heels of other recent AI-focused YouTube experiments like mobile quizzes and AI dubbing. Earlier in July, YouTube began testing AI-generated quizzes about videos people had recently watched to reinforce learning. They also introduced a tool called Aloud that uses AI to help creators dub videos into other languages automatically.
The flurry of AI experimentation highlights YouTube's continued investment in AI to improve its platform. Features like video summaries that utilize AI could help both viewers and creators by enhancing navigation, discovery, and accessibility of content.
However, the technology also raises concerns around issues like algorithmic bias that YouTube will need to study closely if these tools are eventually launched more broadly. As AI plays an increasing role in influencing the content people see online, companies like YouTube face extra pressure to ensure transparency and editorial oversight.
But in the meantime, features like video summaries create opportunities to get useful AI-aided functionality into the hands of users, and gather real-world feedback to shape the future of content discovery and consumption on the platform.