YouTube Music will tap into enormous collection of music videos.
YouTube is shaking up its entertainment offerings with a new music-specific app called YouTube Music.
It’s been rumoured for some time that YouTube will make a big push into music, and Google has now officially revealed that the Spotify-esque app will launch 22 May in the US, Australia, Mexico and South Korea. Other countries will be getting YouTube Music in “coming weeks”.
The service promises to offer millions of songs, thousands of playlists and artist radio channels. YouTube Music will also leverage the company’s vast music video collection, combining audio tracks with videos.
“The days of jumping back and forth between multiple music apps and YouTube are over,” wrote Elias Roman, product manager for YouTube Music, in a blog post.
“YouTube Music is a new music-streaming service made for music: official songs, albums, thousands of playlists and artist radio, plus YouTube’s tremendous catalogue of remixes, live performances, covers and music videos that you can’t find anywhere else – all simply organised and personalised.”
Roman also noted that YouTube Music will be able to surface specific songs from vague terms, such as “that hipster song with the whistling”. This suggests the service will tap into Google’s search algorithms – which also tailor recommendations based on history – as well as location data, somewhat unsettlingly:
“At the airport? We’ll recommend something relaxing before the flight. Entering the gym? We’ll suggest some beats to get the heart rate going,” the blog post reads.
Previous reports suggested that the service, thought to have been called YouTube Remix, would replace Google Play Music. That doesn’t seem to be the case. Roman explained that Google Play Music subscribers will automatically get a YouTube Music Premium membership. For now, at least, those subscribers will still be able to access all their purchased music, uploads and playlists in Google Play Music.
The standalone music app is part of a wider revamp of YouTube Red, the streaming platform’s subscription service, which will now be called YouTube Premium.
In the US, YouTube Music Premium will set you back $US9.99 per month, although a free version of YouTube Music with ads will also be available, similar to Spotify. Pay $US11.99 per month and you’ll have access to YouTube Premium, which includes YouTube Music Premium, as well as ad-free videos, downloads and access to YouTube Originals.