Being one of the very first places users go to listen to music, video streaming site YouTube is reportedly working on a dedicated music streaming service too.
10 years ago, if you’d have asked the average audiophile where they buy or listen to new music, it’s likely that most would have said ‘[insert name of local music store]’, plenty more would have said ‘the radio’ with a handful pointing to their friends’ recommendations for new bands, tracks and tunes to plug into their ear drums. Nowadays, answers to the same question would likely range from ‘Spotify’ to ‘last.fm’, with an assortment of streaming sites in between, but YouTube, home to thousands of music videos, would perhaps be lower on that list of answers, in part for the fact that it requires an Internet connection and you often have to depend on fanmade videos to get a listen. Now, YouTube are looking to be the only answer, as they are reportedly working on a brand new streaming service of their own.
It’s little surprise that YouTube are doing this, with reports from earlier this year suggesting that this month the popular video site will be releasing a feature allowing users to access content even when they’re offline. Now, the rumour is a little more likely, as a source explains to Billboard. According to the anonymous source in the report, the yet to be announced YouTube streaming service will offer both free and paid tiers, each with different levels of access for those who choose to use it. The premium tier will reportedly offer unlimited listens to everything in YouTube’s library (licensing of which has already been secured by their parent company, Google) while the free version is unlikely to be unlimited but will still offer music across all of the platforms YouTube is available on, including mobile.
Meanwhile, the sources state that as the streaming service is being planned with mobile listening in mind, it could suggest that YouTube are being strategic in an effort to pair up with other Google products such as their hi-tech glasses device, Google Glass. It’s also being said that in order to justify users paying for the service, YouTube will offer the ability to listen to full albums, something that would appeal to those who only watch official music videos, in which only a few tracks from an album are selected by the artist or record label to get a music video.
No release date has been announced (neither has the service itself) but the source says that it could be released soon. YouTube, on the other hand, had just this to say “[YouTube are] always working on new and better ways for people to enjoy YouTube content across all screens, and on giving partners more opportunities to reach their fans. However, [they] have nothing to announce at this time.” Which, while hardly being a definitive ‘no’ to whether the service is happening or not, tells us that we should keep tabs on this story as it develops.
We’ll keep you posted once we know more.