If you thought the music service marketplace was crowded enough with Spotify, Itunes, BBC iplayer and all the other on-demand listening services, it might be set to get even more so, as some reports are suggesting Youtube could soon be launching its own version.
Regardless of market saturation however, Youtube is a hotbed of music video viewing, with some of the biggest netting over a billion views over several months. With that in mind, Youtube’s offering could potentially make a lot of money offering an improved experience to its user base, even if only a small per centage make the jump over.
This news comes right out of Billboard, which suggests that the service would be designed with mobile listening at its core. Videos would be able to be downloaded and cached, or ripped as MP3s – which would give us another reason why Google cracked down on ripping sites a while back – though these tracks are likely to be prefaced by advertising in the free version.
A premium account will also no doubt come into play, where for a small monthly fee Youtube would be expected to dump all adverts from videos – though it’s not clear how that money would be shared with content producers – though it could be part of a pre-paid licensing deal with record labels. With said deals already in place, Google would potentially be able to provide music on platforms that have yet to exploit the medium, such as Google Glass.
However, Youtube would need to streamline its applications in order to make certain parts of them music focused and perhaps remove access – or at least partition it separately – to non-musical content.
Officially Youtube has no comment on this matter, though in a statement it did hint at future developments: “We’re always working on new and better ways for people to enjoy YouTube content across all screens, and on giving partners more opportunities to reach their fans. However, we have nothing to announce at this time.”
KitGuru Says: It would be interesting to know if this does come to fruition, if Youtube would prevent Vevo from censoring adult language in songs. Currently that’s an irritating problem on Youtube, where all Vevo related content has had the music and lyrics altered to restrict “bad” language. Quality would need to be assured too, as nobody is going to want to pay a few dollars a month to watch music videos on the go in 240p.