YouTube unveiled a number of features for music lovers today. They include a new invitation-only streaming music service called YouTube Music Key, launching in beta next week, and a new home in your account just for your favourite songs and music videos.
YouTube Music Key, a new service that turns the YouTube app on your phone into a streaming music player as well as a video app, will offer background playback, offline listening, music videos and more in one service. It pulls all of the new music features from YouTube together with Google Play Music's 30 million song catalogue and streaming radio. It will offer ad-free, premium streaming for $US10 per month (starting out with a promo price of $US8 per month) and will come with a free subscription to Google Play Music. It's launching in beta next week, and it's invitation-only for now. We knew this was coming, and it looks a lot like what we predicted.
YouTube's new music hub is available today in the YouTube app for iOS or Android, or on the web. You'll find a new music tab that highlights your favourite music videos, suggestions based on them, and some playlists based on time of day and mood. If you subscribe to musicians on YouTube, their new videos will show up there too. In the same space, you'll also find high-quality streaming albums you can listen to from the YouTube website, or through the mobile app (both of which, YouTube promises, are light on bandwidth).
Many of us already use YouTube for music, since you can find just about anything you want to hear there and add it to a playlist or send it over to another service. Now YouTube is capitalising on that and finally introducing features that make it easier to use YouTube for music directly, instead of through some of the third-party apps we've mentioned before.
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