YouTube Music has launched, here’s why it’s worth it

Yesterday YouTube Music launched bringing a whole new location for music on YouTube with a bunch of cool new features.

YouTube Music is now live after announcing the launch last week and available in the US, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand, and South Korea. The new home for music brings together all the music content you love on YouTube into one place and introduces a new subscription option which gets you added benefits.

Here’s YouTube’s 6 reasons why you will love YouTube Music:

  1. It’s ALL here. Not just music videos, but official albums, singles, remixes, live performances, covers and hard-to-find music you can only get on YouTube.
  2. Recommendations built for you. A home screen that dynamically adapts to provide recommendations based on what you’ve played before, where you are and what you’re doing. At the gym workin’ on that fitness? Escaping during your commute? The right music is right here, built just for you.
  3. Thousands of playlists across any genre, mood or activity. Try “Blogged 50” to discover new music or “Indie Under Pressure” to get the heart rate going.
  4. Smart search so we’ll find the song, even if you can’t remember what it’s called. “That rap song with flute”? We got you. You can also search by lyrics (even if they’re wrong). It’s “Starbucks lovers,” right?
  5. The hottest videos. We’ll keep you on top of what’s hot! The hottest videos in the world right now are right there, on their own dedicated Hotlist screen. Today in the U.S., it features Anderson.Paak, Jessie Reyez, and G-Eazy.
  6. No internet? No problem. Paid members can download music and listen ad-free and in the background. Plus, your Offline Mixtape automatically downloads songs you love just in case you forgot to.

To the Google Play Music users out there, nothing will change – you’ll still be able to access and add to all of your purchased music, uploads and playlists in Google Play Music just like always. For additional information on what we announced last week, be sure to check out our blog.

If you’re interested in learning more and getting access, head to music.youtube.com/coming-soon.

Artists now credited on over half a billion YouTube videos

YouTube have added musical credits for over 500 million videos giving artists and writers their deserved acknowledgement in the millions of videos they are used.

YouTube have added a new section to the descriptions of videos which credits the songwriters, artists, labels, and publishers involved. The new ‘music in this video’ section will be added to over half a billion videos and will give viewers an instant look into the creatives and people behind music in videos.

The new section will offer a comprehensive list of everyone involved in the creation of music used in videos that they are capable of crediting. Where possible they will also provide links to the artist’s official channel and the song’s official music video. ‘Music in this video’ credits will be added to official channels as well as fan-uploaded content.

This comes as YouTube prepare to launch their new dedicated music subscription service next week: YouTube Music. Their new service will offer up all of the music content available on YouTube including music videos, songs, albums, covers, remixes, live performances and more in one collated space. It will be available for free with ads or for $9.99 a month without ads with extra benefits like background listening and downloads.

This is all part of YouTube’s move to increase the value of music on their platform after repeated criticism from the industry. YouTube’s issue with music primarily was that it made lots of music readily available on a free platform that pays out considerably less for video streams than the payout per stream on more traditional music streaming services like Spotify. They are rectifying that with their new service which will ensure artists get paid more. Their new credits show that they are taking more steps to give artists the respect they are due.

YouTube’s new music service is launching in under a week

YouTube are finally ready to launch their new music service which they hope will give music the value it deserves on their video platform.

YouTube will be launching YouTube Music next week, a new service that distinguishes their abundance of music content from their variety of billions of videos after criticism over their royalty payouts for music. The new subscription service will be the new home to the 2 million artists that share their music on YouTube and where over 1 billion music fans around the world come to listen.

Next Tuesday, 22nd May, YouTube Music will launch as a “new music streaming service made for music with the magic of YouTube”. YouTube Music will bring official songs, albums, thousands of playlists and artist radios in one unified place along with their giant catalogue of remixes, live performances, covers and music videos that can only be found on YouTube.

With their new streaming service YouTube will launch a new, re-imagined mobile app as well as a re-designed desktop player that has been made for music. It will bear similarities to standard music streaming services like Spotify however will feature all of YouTube’s plentiful video content for music as well as user-uploaded and created content that wouldn’t be found on traditional streaming services.

YouTube Music will be available for free with adverts, the same as YouTube itself however will offer an ad-free version. YouTube Music Premium will cost $9.99 a month and offer uninterrupted listening, background listening on mobile, and downloads. YouTube’s parent Google offer a traditional music streaming service in Google Play Music but these services will be combined so that, where available, a subscription to one equals a subscription to both.

YouTube Music subscription service streaming premium launch mobile app player

YouTube offer a premium service for their regular, non-music video content called YouTube Red which offers the same benefits as well as exclusive video content and also was bundled in with Google Play Music. Moving forward they will be replacing Red with ‘YouTube Premium’ which will offer the same service but will distinguish non-music content from all videos on YouTube. YouTube Premium will include YouTube Music within it and will cost $11.99 for new members. Existing Red members will retain their same subscription price.

At launch YouTube Music will be available in the US, Australia, New Zealand, Mexico, and South Korea. Over the coming weeks they will also be launching in Austria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the UK.

Stay on top of all the hottest new music with the new YouTube Charts

Keeping track of what’s hot in music can be a chore, but no more on YouTube as they’ll be presenting you with what’s popping on their platform in real-time.

YouTube are looking to take a more serious step in the music direction after the past year has seen controversy over their payments to artists. As they move closer to launching a dedicated music service on YouTube they have spread their music charts across the world and introduced a new way to keep up to date with the hottest new tunes.

YouTube have just rolled out new and improved music charts for 44 countries around the world, including the US, UK, Japan, Germany, Brazil and more. The new dedicated charts page gives you a tailored look at what the hottest tracks and artists on YouTube are right now because, they say: “We understand the importance of showcasing and celebrating the hottest artists, songs and music videos from around the world.”

The fresh charts page features a brand new Trending section which shows what is new, hot and rising. The trending chart is updated throughout the day so that it can present a real-time offering of what people are listening to. YouTube say it’s their first dedicated external signal of their platforms most viewed new music.

Speaking to Billboard YouTube’s head of label relations, Stephen Bryan said: “The labels and a lot of the industry already use YouTube to understand what’s hot, and as the world’s most powerful music discovery platform, we play a really critical role in new music today. The Trending chart is an evolution that’s based on that understanding. We think it’s going to be incredibly helpful to the industry in providing the clearest view in what’s happening in music today.”

Beyond the new Trending section their charts will feature a Top Songs chart which combines the views on all versions of a song, including music videos, lyric videos, and official songs uploaded by users. There is then the Top Artists list which shows YouTube’s most popular artists based on views across their entire discography. Then finally there’s the Top Music Videos chart which you can probably gauge the contents of by now.

Live-streaming on YouTube is now as simple as pressing a button

YouTube’s latest update makes it easier than ever to jump straight into a live-stream, including straight from your camera smartphone.

YouTube’s live-streaming platform has become massive since launching years ago. With so many people streaming videos live now YouTube have made it so much easier to sign into YouTube and jump straight into a live-stream.

Streaming live is now as easy as going to youtube.com/webcam or, from your YouTube dashboard, clicking the ‘Go Live’ button in the header. No encoding, software or extra steps are needed anymore, you just start streaming from your webcam instantly from YouTube. It currently works straight away with Chrome and Google say they are expanding to other browsers soon.

Live-streaming on computers could still be much simpler though, and that’s why YouTube are adding simple live streams straight from your smartphone’s camera. Over the coming months YouTube will be adding more devices that you can stream directly from the camera app to YouTube. Select devices from Asus, LG, Motorola, Nokia, and Samsung will be made compatible with live-streaming in the coming months.

YouTube are hoping to activate even more devices with live-streaming functionality as the year goes on with YouTube Mobile Live deep link.

YouTube’s head of music announces music subscription service… again

YouTube have been discussing a music subscription service for years and Lyor Cohen just re-announced it’s existence saying, “we know we’re late to the party”.

At SXSW this weekend YouTube’s global head of music Lyor Cohen spoke about what YouTube have planned for their music subscription. Cohen says that YouTube’s music service, when it comes into existence, will combine “the best of Google Play Music’s context server” and YouTube’s “breadth and depth of catalogue”.

Whilst many thought YouTube would fully announce the service at SXSW, Google denied that that was ever the case. Cohen instead spoke on what he’s learned during his time in the industry and how they’ll be integrating what he’s learnt into YouTube’s eventual music service. Though he’s self aware that YouTube have delayed their music service for a long time now, saying: “We know we’re late to the party. It’s okay.”

Whilst details are still scarce on the service, Cohen does say: “I’m focused on bringing diversity to distribution; and we’ll do that by adding a subscription business on top of YouTube’s already growing advertising business.” This will be music to artists’ ears after YouTube have long featured music on their giant video platform but with considerably lower streaming rates than other streaming services.

It will be interesting to see how YouTube separate their music service from YouTube Red and Google Play Music, or if they decide to combine them as Cohen said he would last year before going silent again. Both are linked together into on service, where YouTube Red is available, and offers a full music streaming service like Spotify alongside ad-free videos which supposedly pay out better than ad-funded viewing.

Cohen believes that the power of recommendations will set their service apart, saying: “Did you know that 80 percent of all of watch time on YouTube is recommended by a recommendation engine? I didn’t think that was the case when I first joined, but I now know it to be true. Now we’re layering in a programming division solely focused on building and growing the playlist ecosystem that users would love across both paid and ad-supported.”

Cohen says that the two types of consumption can live side-by-side, saying: “The industry is going to return and grow by ads and subscriptions. There are plenty of leaned-in listeners that are willing to pay. We are going to convert them to paid subscribers. We’re making an enormous investment to launch a product that you will be proud of.”

Let’s find out when you actually launch it, Cohen.

Join the dark side with YouTube’s new theme on mobile

Give your YouTube the look you want as they finally launch dark themes on mobile a year after coming to desktops.

Last year YouTube added the option on desktops to switch to a night mode theme that turns YouTube dark. Now the dark theme is coming to the mobile app for when you’re bingeing on videos late at night or if you just fancy embracing the dark side.

To get the new look YouTube it’s as simple as going into the settings in the YouTube app and pushing the switch for the ‘Dark Theme’. Unfortunately for Android users the feature has only come to iOS so far but YouTube say that they haven’t forgotten about Android and it will come to them “soon”.

The dark theme offers an alternative to YouTube’s bright white aesthetic. The darker theme switches white with black so that it’s easier on the eyes, particularly in darker environments. Beyond it’s benefits on visual strain for a lot of people it will just look a bit cooler, and who doesn’t like trying something new.

YouTube dark theme mobile ios

Over half of YouTube’s views are now made on mobile devices so it’s been a long time coming for such an easily implemented feature. YouTube say that a mobile dark theme has been one of the most requested features for YouTube since they launched it on desktop last year.

YouTube update live streaming for a funner, fuller experience

Live-streaming on YouTube is getting massive and they’ve just made some updates to make the experience even better for everyone.

It’s been 3 years since YouTube launched live-streaming and it’s getting more popular by the year, doubling in views within 1 year of launch – and that was 1-and-a-half years ago. Millions of people are now logging in to stream live video, and YouTube have just updated the experience with some cool new features.

Live chat saves conversations

YouTube live stream streaming chat

YouTube have introduced ‘chat replay’ which saves the chat log on live-streams so you can go back and read through conversations, even after streams have ended. They will show up alongside the video as they do live.

Introducing Subtitles

Back in 2009 YouTube launched auto-captions on videos so that the hard-of-hearing could enjoy videos the same as others. Now they’re bringing English automatic captions to live streams so that everyone can follow the action as it happens.

They say: “When professionally provided captions aren’t available, our new live automatic captions provide creators a quick and inexpensive way to make live streams accessible to more people. With out live automatic speech recognition (LASR) technology, you’ll get captions with error rates and latency approaching industry standards. We’ll roll this out in the coming weeks, and will continue to improve accuracy and latency of automatic captions.

New fun features for streamers

YouTube mobile live streaming update location tagging stream live

Streamers can now add location tags to their mobile live streams and video uploads to share their favourite hot spots with viewers. This new feature also means that viewers can click a location tag and instantly find other videos and streams from the same place. A new location filter has also been added in the search function.

“With live streams, you’ve found more intimate and spontaneous ways to share your thoughts, lives, and creativity. Take these features for a spin and show us your world!”

YouTube Go launching in 130+ countries starting today

YouTube are bringing their on-the-go app to over 100 more countries around the world from today onwards.

YouTube launched their Go app in India last year, a new mobile app built from fresh to “unlock the power of YouTube for the next generation of users”. They went on to launch it in a further 14 nearby countries including Indonesia, Nigeria, and Thailand. Now it’s coming to loads more countries.

YouTube have announced that starting today they will be bringing the YouTube Go app to more than 130 countries around the world. Their app allows you to download YouTube videos to watch later so that if you’re going someone with little to no connectivity you can queue up some videos to watch from your device.

With YouTube you can:

  • Videos that matter to you: The YouTube Go home screen features trending and popular videos in your area, so that you can find and discover videos that you and your community care about. The entire experience is available in your language, with videos that are relevant to you.
  • Control over your experience: On YouTube Go, we’ll show you a video preview when you tap on a thumbnail, giving you a better sense of what the video is about before you decide if you want to watch it. You can then choose to download the video for viewing later or stream it now. And we also allow you to choose the amount of data you’d like to spend on that video.
  • Share videos with friends nearby: With YouTube Go, you can share videos with friends and family nearby without using any data.
  • Watch in high quality: In response to user feedback, we’ve given you even more control of your experience and added the ability to download, stream, and share videos in High Quality in addition to basic and standard quality resolutions.
  • Discover fresh content you love: We heard that you wanted an even easier way to get the freshest videos recommended to you. Now, you can get new personalized content with a simple pull of the home screen. We also notify you when new videos are uploaded from the channels you love.
  • Share more easily: We know you love sharing videos, so we made design changes to make it even easier to access the share nearby feature right from the home page. We also added a highly requested feature: allowing multiple videos to be shared at once.

YouTube say: “We’ve been working hard to build a YouTube app that works for you, with brand new features designed with your preferences, aspirations and needs in mind. We can’t wait to see what you can do with the power of YouTube in the palm of your hand.”

YouTube’s Artist Channels auto-subscribe you to artist’s new hub for music and content

Find all of an artist’s content in one place from tracks, music videos, interviews, covers and more with new Artist Channels.

YouTube’s Official Artist Channels consolidate everything official from artists into one place so fans can easily find all their music and related content on YouTube. It was quietly launched by YouTube last year to bolster the music content on their platform, and now they’re fully integrating these channels.

Now that artists can bring all of their content to one place YouTube are expanding on that feature by bringing in subscribers from any of the grouped channels. This means that subscribers to any of the included channels will automatically be added as a subscriber to their artist channel and can keep up to date with any new official content from artists.

In addition to subscriber consolidation YouTube are changing it so that soon when you search for an artist their Official Artist Channel will be the first result you see. This will make it easier to find everything an artist has officially released but will push down unofficial channels featuring or made for that artist will be much harder to find.

Additionally with unofficial channels getting booted down users that are subscribed to unofficial artist channels will be subscribed to the Artist Channel and no longer the unofficial channel. It is a great move for artists who will have all of their fans on YouTube in one place where they can show off new music and promote videos.

Over the next few weeks YouTube will be integrating all these changes for Official Artist Channels. Artists can find out more about their Artist Channel here whilst users worried about their subscriptions and notifications can find out more here.