How to Change YouTube Music Playlist Cover on Mobile and Web

How to Change YouTube Music Playlist Cover on Mobile and Web

Google’s YouTube Music (RIP Google Play Music, we’ll miss you) is gradually becoming a favorite among many users. Its seamless integration with the YouTube app, video add-on, automatic playlists, and a huge music library are some of the main reasons one would prefer to use YouTube Music. Above all, playlists are the strong feature of all of them, as you can edit them, make them public and even change the playlist thumbnail from mobile and web YouTube Music.

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Change YouTube Music Coverage

Playlists play a major role in any music streaming service. Like Spotify’s Daily Mix, YouTube Music also offers out-of-the-box personalized, system-generated playlists based on your preferences and listening habits.

You can either add the automatic playlists to your library or use a manual method to create a playlist from scratch. If you’re not a fan of the default playlist coverage on YouTube Music, read the post to make changes.

Default playlist coverage

First, let’s see how YouTube retrieves the default cover photo for a playlist. When you add songs from different albums to a playlist, YouTube organizes them in the playlist.

YouTube Music retrieves the album cover of the first song you add to a playlist. For example, if you added “Let It Go” from the Frozen movie as the main song in the playlist, you will see the cover of the Frozen movie.

Change YouTube Music Playlist Coverage

There are two ways to change the coverage of YouTube Music playlist. You can use the mobile app or the web version.

On mobile

Let’s see how to edit YouTube Music playlist on mobile first. YouTube Music provides the same interface for Android and iOS apps. For this guide, we’ll be using the YouTube Music app for iOS. You can follow the same steps on the Android version and expect the same results.

Step 1: Open the YouTube Music app on iPhone or Android.

2nd step: Go to the Library tab.

Home You Tube Music

Step 3: Access the Playlists menu.

Step 4: Here you will see all created and saved playlists with picture cover, name and number of songs.

Library menu

Step 5: Select the playlist where you want to edit the thumbnail.

Step 6: In the next menu, you will see how YouTube retrieves the album cover of the first song in the playlist.

Press edit

Step 7: Here you can change the name of the playlist, add a description, make it public, and even add a collaborator. Use drag and drop to place the top song whose album cover you want to use as the playlist thumbnail.

Change the order

Step 8: Tap Done in the top right corner and you will immediately notice the change.

Order loaded

You can also make the same edits from the YouTube Music web.

Use YouTube Web to change playlist coverage

YouTube offers the Web as well as Progressive Web App (PWA). Both have the same user interface and the same functions. Follow the steps to change the playlist coverage on the web.

Step 1: Visit YouTube Music on the web.

2nd step: Sign in using your Google Account credentials.

Step 3: Go to the Library tab at the top.


Step 4: Go to Playlists and select the playlist.

Step 5: Here, if you press the Edit Playlist button, it will only allow you to change the name, description, and privacy of the playlist.

Step 6: To change the order of songs, you can just use drag and drop and keep your favorite song at the top.

Playlist on the web

Step 7: Hit the back button and the YouTube Music playlist will automatically adopt the cover photo of the first song / album in the queue.

Modified coverage on the web

Limitations with current methods

  • It’s Google’s classic way of doing things differently, just for the fun of it. For example, on mobile you need to press Edit Playlist button first and then use drag and drop while on desktop you can just use drag and drop without messing with Edit button.
  • YouTube Music allows you to upload music from your library to its web application. But unlike Spotify, there is no way to directly create a playlist from a custom image.
  • Spotify carefully creates a playlist cover image from the top four songs in a playlist. In my opinion, it looks better than the rudimentary YouTube Music approach.

Spotify album cover
  • There is no way to set the album cover of the fifth or seventh song as the playlist thumbnail without keeping it at the top.

Also on Guiding Tech

Create YouTube Music playlists on the go

YouTube Music playlists are the centerpiece of the overall music streaming experience. And as a mature product, it’s good to see the level of customization that the service offers to users. After all, you need to deliver on all fronts to beat the market leader Spotify. What is your experience with YouTube Music so far? Sound off in the comments section below.


Are you confused between YouTube Music and Amazon Music? Read the comparison article below to choose a better service for you.

Last updated on Oct 9, 2020

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