​Youtube squares up to Spotify with new music streaming app

YouTube looks to leverage its brand with the launch of two paid-subscription apps: YouTube Music and YouTube Premium


YouTube has launched YouTube Music and YouTube Premium (formerly YouTube Red) in 17 countries on June 18, 2018. YouTube had previously launched a free, ad-supported version of the music app in five markets: Australia, New Zealand, Mexico, the US and South Korea.

YouTube Music is a standalone app which will allow users to listen to ad-free music from YouTube's vast library of content, including concerts and music videos. It also delivers on two popular requests from YouTube user: The ability to listen to music in the background and the ability to download music straight from the app onto personal devices.

YouTubes pricing scheme

YouTube Premium includes all the above features, as well as access to YouTube's burgeoning library of original content, YouTube Originals. YouTube has partnered up with a number of their most popular creators such as Liza Koshi and Wisecrack to produce content targeted at its main demographic of under-25-year olds. Youtube Premium will have hybrid functionality, encroaching on two markets: The music streaming app market of Spotify and the video streaming app market which Netflix currently dominates.

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Despite YouTube's relatively late entry into the paid subscription arena, it does have some advantages over other music streaming services such as Apple Music and Spotify. Youtube already has a very large audience, currently reaching more people through mobile than any TV network in the US.

Speaking to The Guardian, YouTube's product manager for YouTube Music, Elias Roman, detailed YouTube's advantage as its "tremendous catalog of remixes, live performances, covers and music videos that you can’t find anywhere else – all simply organized and personalized". 

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