YouTube starts streaming serviceBy Amy Marino | 11/24/2014 11:41pm
Spotify and Beats Music both offer a wide-variety of artists, but none in the streaming space can compare to the expansiveness that is YouTube. With more than one billion monthly visitors, YouTube is the world’s favorite music-sharing platform by a landslide.
Because it’s still in beta-test mode, invites to join Music Key will only be sent to YouTube’s elite, which includes the site’s most dedicated users. The only way to get around the invitation process is to become a subscriber to Google Play Music, which with a $10 monthly fee, will automatically upgrade users to Music Key and even give them the first two months of their subscription free. Not bad at all, considering everything they’re going to get.
Music Key subscribers will never have to deal with the treacherous YouTube ad again. 15-second car commercials without a “skip” option will no longer be day-ruiners. Also, subscribers will have the ability to click the play button on a video and then check their email inbox without having the video stop. Different from using YouTube, listeners will have the freedom to decide if a video should be background noise or not.
With Music Key, YouTube is ultimately aiming for a win-win scenario for listeners and artists. Listeners will be able to better enjoy their favorite music and artists will make more money because of it. With record sales being at an all-time low (the exception being TSwift) and streaming services at an all-time high, artists are deservedly wanting more. To make the new features available, YouTube has partnered with every major label and thousands of independent labels.
Unquestionably, Music Key will rise to the top of the streaming services space with fervor. Google knows where the money is and they showed up at just the right time. The future of music is in streaming; people love it. While CDs are becoming extinct and iTunes downloads less popular, streaming prices keep going up and listeners don’t seem to mind it much as long as they can still listen for free, too.
Will streaming remain free? For a while, free music was vital in order to bring in customers for streaming platforms, but now according to analysts in the music space, it seems to have stunted the growth of subscriptions. Ads aren’t hard to withstand for the sake of free music. As glorious as free is, artists just can’t compete with free. Music Key is a step in the right direction for artists and listeners alike.