After leaking this afternoon, YouTube has decided to get ahead of the murmurings and officially announced the service which will go live on May 22nd in the US, meaning May 23rd here in Australia.
The launch is of two new services – YouTube Music and YouTube Premium.
YouTube says that the YouTube Music will include a free, ad-supported service that will allow you to access all the new features of YouTube Music, though a AU$11.99/month paid tier will offer benefits including ad-free content, background playback, and offline downloads.
The YouTube Music service will include ‘thousands of playlists, the official versions of millions of songs, albums, artist radio and more, in addition to all the music videos people expect from YouTube’ as well as covers, remixes and live versions.
The new YouTube Music app, which looks similar to the old one, will feature all this in one, easy to use place.
The good news if you’re a Google Play Music customer is you’ll still be able to access all your purchased music, uploads and playlists in Google Play Music, and you’ll be grandfathered in to YouTube Music Premium – so it seems the monthly price won’t change. Though, if you were a fan of YouTube Red you will have to pay more – because this is where YouTube Premium comes in.
You can express your interest in YouTube Music by heading to music.youtube.com/coming-soon.
YouTube Red was great, but now it’s being supplanted by YouTube Premium and it will cost more as of Tuesday.
YouTube Premium also includes access to ad-free access to YouTube, the ability to background play videos, and downloads across YouTube.
Pricing for YouTube Premium will be grandfathered for users of YouTube Red apparently, with YouTube saying ‘When YouTube Premium launches, YouTube Red members will automatically receive access at their current price’.
The good news is, if you want to get in on that YouTube Red pricing, you can with sign-ups still available through youtube.com/red – where YouTube Red costs AU$14.99/month – or for families you can get access for up to 6 family members for $17.99 per month with a 1-month trial included for both.
YouTube says they’re going to be launching more YouTube Original series which include ‘comedies, dramas, reality series and action adventure shows’ soon.
Creating content costs money, and with the success of the recent Cobra Kai series the blood is in the water for Google and YouTube to make more of it – hence: YouTube Premium now costing $2 per month extra.
The good news for existing YouTube Red users is that it doesn’t look like anything will change – and you can still get in on that pricing for $11.99AUD per month which by all accounts appears to include both the ad-free YouTube Music Premium and the YouTube Premium service, plus all your Google Play Music subscription.
For new users it’s going to cost more once this whole shebang launches next Tuesday, so our recommendation is to get over to YouTube.com/red and sign up now.