YouTube has officially launched YouTube Music.
The music app, which has been touted by the streaming site for some time, arrives hot on the heels of new subscription service YouTube Red. YouTube Music allows users to download and stream music on their iOS and Android devices.
Users will be able search through YouTube gargantuan library of songs – but also its array of remixes, covers, lyric videos and concert footage.
Indeed, music has been a major component of the site’s success over the years, with YouTube also paying out over $3 billion to the record industry to date. in addition to sales of digital music, YouTube has also become a way to drive ticket sales and merchandise, with the community of fans and cover artists strengthening that connection: earlier this month, Adele’s single, Hello, became not just the fastest rising video of the year on YouTube but also broke the record for first week download sales.
The app promises “a completely new experience”, mostly through the introduction of features music fans using YouTube have probably craved for years, such as non-stop playback of songs: once an artist or track is chosen, YouTube will recommend songs and create personalised radio stations based on your tastes.
Of course, YouTube will be hoping the non-stop playback will also fuel demand for its subscription package, which allows YouTubers to watch (or listen) to content without any adverts – and, much like Spotify, download music offline to listen to. Users can also switch be video and audio-only, with users able to continue listening to videos playing even when switching to other apps.
The service is currently only available in the US, with a 7-day free trial, but you can expect YouTube to roll this out to the UK and further afield as quickly as possible.