YouTube is launching its own music streaming service this May 22. YouTube Music is to offer both ad-supported and a pay version of $9.99 per month. This is to compete with streaming services like Apple Inc, Spotify Technology SA, Pandora Media Inc and Amazon.com Inc. The website will offer personalized playlists based on the history of the user. This service will hopefully replace Google Play Music, Alphabet Inc unit’s existing music streaming brand. In the stock market, streaming companies Spotify and Pandora saw a low in their value by two percent.
“Google has an advantage given YouTube’s more than a billion users and viewers. So, it has opportunities to convert some into YouTube Music listeners or premium subscribers,” said Ali Mogharabi, analyst at Morningstar Research.
There is a growing niche of paid music streaming which has helped wean a generation of music listeners away from the sorts of free and pirate music. This has led music streaming services like Spotify and Apple Music to gain popularity and become a major source of revenue in the recording industry. According to the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, revenue generated from these streaming services took over the sales of CDs and digital downloads for the first time last year.
The countries that will see the first launch of YouTube Music are United States of America, Australia, New Zealand, Mexico and South Korea. In the following weeks it is expected to roll out in more countries. YouTube also said it would revamp YouTube Red, the paid version of YouTube that comes with original programming, to include YouTube Music at an additional price of $2.
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