How to download YouTube videos for free and legally

How to download YouTube videos for free and legally

Watching content on our smartphones have become a cakewalk. Many OTT platforms provide a sea of content that will suit any mood you are in. I literally never use my cable TV as I watch my content on Amazon Prime Video and Netflix. But, YouTube is where my heart is. It is free (not counting YT Premium) and anyone can watch any video without paying any subscription fee. Moreover, YouTube is the second largest search engine, while Google takes the trophy home.

We are in 2020 and everyone has seen a YouTube video once in their lifetime. Why? Because it’s popular, it’s free, and a great source of global infotainment. So it’s a given that many people might want to keep the content for offline viewing as keeping yourself entertained on your trips, trains, and planes without an internet connection is what we all yearn for. But unfortunately, saving a YouTube video for offline viewing is illegal.

YouTube’s Terms of Service clearly states that downloading YouTube videos (even if you don’t intend to change, sell, or claim them as your own) is illegal. But there’s a way through which you can download YouTube videos to watch videos without an internet connection which is a legal way. So, what are you waiting for? Let’s jump right in.

How to download YouTube videos for free and legally

Keep in mind that using third-party apps to download YouTube videos is against Youtube’s terms of service – which wants you to just stream videos directly from its servers. It’s because downloading YouTube videos also leads to possible copyright infringement unless and until you have permission from the video’s owner, it’s in the public domain, or you own the video.

How to download YouTube videos for free and legally

YouTube Downloads

YouTube introduced a nifty-little feature to download their videos that are both free and legal and you won’t require a third-party application. The feature itself is known as ‘Download’ and sits right within the native YouTube application.

Step 1: Launch the YouTube application on your device and search for a video.

Step 2: Click on that to view it. You will see a ‘Download’ button right between Share and Save.

How to download YouTube videos for free and legally

Step 3: You’ll see a pop-up that will ask you to choose the resolution of the video. If you don’t want the pop-up to annoy you, you can just click on ‘Remember my settings.’

How to download YouTube videos for free and legally

Step 4: You will now see that the video is being downloaded. You can either cancel the download from the drop-down menu, as seen below or simply click on the ‘Download’ button on the video, which doubles as a cancel command.

How to download YouTube videos for free and legally

Step 5: Now go to the ‘Library’ to see your downloads. Click on ‘Downloads.’

How to download YouTube videos for free and legally

Step 6: You will see all your downloads here. Note that all the downloaded videos will disappear is your device doesn’t have an internet connection for at least 29 days.

How to download YouTube videos for free and legally

There it is. This is a simple way to download YouTube videos for free which is also legal. Now, I know you were hoping for something shady but let me remind you that downloading videos using third-party apps is illegal. 3nions doesn’t endorse illegal apps.


Can you download YouTube videos for free?

Yes, you can download YouTube videos in the app itself. However, it won’t be stored in your storage. You can access it from the YouTube app.

How can I legally download YouTube videos?

Downloading YouTube videos is illegal. Section 5 of YouTube’s Terms of Service states that it illegal to download YouTube videos even if you are not changing, selling, or claiming them as your own.

How can I download YouTube videos without any application?

YouTube introduced downloads to address the issue of offline viewing. You can download videos in the app to watch the videos without an internet connection.

Is screen recording Youtube illegal?

You can screen record YouTube videos but it is illegal, even for offline viewing. You can’t make copies of any content without permission.


YouTube is an amazing medium that lets you see what’s happening around the globe. YouTube Premium is Google’s way of asking for a subscription but I guess you are good with the free one. As I said, there are many third-party apps that will let you download YouTube videos but it is really illegal. You should opt for a safe and easy way that Google has endorsed.

I am an ambivert, an avid reader, a movie buff, a tea connoisseur, and a staunch fan of Priyanka Chopra Jonas. I like to give my insights through words, which come naturally to me. They also help me to express the myriads of emotions I go through. When not working, I'm either watching the latest tech videos or flipping through pages.