I have a few very popular videos with lots of views and likes, but after 10 years they're getting outdated and need upgrading. I know there must be a way to replace the videos without losing views or likes. Everywhere I search it says it can't be done, but I know it CAN because the evidence is there on YouTube. Case in point: search YouTube for 'Take On Me' by A-ha. The video recently became only the second 80's music video to gain over a billion views, with the video being present on YouTube since 2010. However, in Dec 2019, Aha replaced the video with a 4K version, which also featured a completely different introduction. NO views were lost. How did they do that? I've been hunting high and low for an answer but not found anything yet. Any ideas??? Anyone??? Thanks.
So from what I've found, you cannot replace the video without losing comments and views. This is because each video uploaded gets a unique URL. There have been other music videos that have done the same thing you described. Those channels are so large though, they might have special privileges not available to the average user. What most people do is add an annotation to the video with a link to the new video stating that the video has been updated. Making changes to the title to inform viewers of the status of the video helps as well. Sorry, I know that's not the answer you were looking for.