How to turn on subtitles on YouTube on your phone or computer, and set them to stay on automatically

YouTube can display subtitles — also known as closed captions — on videos uploaded to the platform to provide helpful written text alongside the audio.  

Captions can be either auto-generated or provided by the user who uploaded the video, and turning captions on and off is a quick and easy process when you’re watching a video. 

Here’s how to turn on those subtitles on YouTube, whether you’re on a computer or using the mobile app. 

How to turn on subtitles on YouTube in a web browser 

1. You can turn on subtitles by clicking the CC icon at the bottom of a YouTube video. A red line will appear under the icon when closed captions have been enabled. 

Turn on subtitles by pressing the CC icon.

2. You can also adjust caption settings by clicking the gear icon. If subtitles are available for a video, a choice of generated captions and other formats will be available here.

Once subtitles are on, click the gear icon to find caption settings.

How to turn on subtitles on YouTube for all videos 

You can enable closed captioning for all the videos you watch on YouTube from your web browser. 

Enabling always-on captioning can be done from your account settings, and the feature will work as long as you’re logged in. 

Here’s how to enable captions for all videos:

1. Click your account icon to open the account menu. 

2. From the account menu, click Settings.

Select Settings in the YouTube account menu.

3. Click „Playback and performance“ and check „Always show captions.“ Click save to save your selection.

Make sure „Always show captions“ is checked.

How to turn on subtitles on YouTube in the mobile app

You can turn on subtitles on YouTube when watching videos on your iPhone or Android in the mobile app. 

Enabling captions on both devices is quick and easy. You can toggle the setting on and off in just a few steps. Here’s how:

1. Tap the three-dot menu in the upper right corner.

2. Tap the CC icon, or Captions, in the menu.

Select Captions in the menu.

3. Select the type of captioning you prefer. 

Choose your captions preferences.