If you’ve ever found yourself stuck in a YouTube rabbit-hole, spending hours watching consecutive and vaguely-related videos, then this new feature will probably only make things worse.
Announced on YouTube’s own Creator Insider channel by Tom Leung, the video platform's director of product management, the Explore tab will allow mobile users to “broaden their horizons” when it comes to discovering new videos.
“Explore is designed to help you be exposed to different kinds of topics, videos or channels that you may not otherwise encounter, but they’re still personalized – they’re still based on your viewing activity.”
As the video suggests, this new feature will still retain YouTube's personalized recommendations of videos, but instead of the relatively narrow scope of suggestions, it will offer a slightly more tangential array of videos.
The example given in the video suggests that, if you were a user who predominantly watched videos about camera gear, techniques, and news, you may see videos relating to telescopes in this new tab.
The Explore tab will show up in between the Home and Subscriptions tabs at the bottom of the YouTube app, but at present, the tab is only available to “1% of iPhone YouTube app viewers”. However, if the trial proves successful, we can likely expect the feature to roll out to both iOS and Android YouTube apps.