Spotify has a new rival, and its name is YouTube music. Yesterday, YouTube announced that their new subscription music service will launch on May 22nd. This will not be a simple task for Google, however. Spotify (recently acquired by Microsoft) and Apple Music both have deep pockets and a proven track record of providing users with a simplified, pleasant experience. There is little space for immediate technological advancements in this market and so far, YouTube Music isn’t delivering any innovation for the experience itself.
YouTube music will need to somehow differentiate itself through experiences provided to users in their music streaming services if they want to conquer market-share in a completely commoditized market without resorting to price wars with their competitors.
There will be two options for users of this new music streaming service. Users can either choose to get the free version, which will contain ads, or a premium version for $9.99. YouTube music will have many of the same features as Spotify. There will be millions of songs, playlists, and special features for premium users, and it will also contain a collection of official music videos on YouTube. The music streaming service will feature a desktop version as well as a mobile version. In another bow to Spotify, it will also provide users with song suggestions based on their listening history, their current location, as well as present activities.
YouTube has allegedly not introduced this new service in order to steal market share from competitor Spotify, however. Lyor Cohen, global music head at YouTube, said that they want to “introduce more variety into the scene and lure in music fans who haven’t yet signed onto music streaming at all.” YouTube also wants to target people who want all of their music, video music content, as well as artist content on a single platform.
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