We’ve been hearing rumors of a YouTube streaming music service for quite a while, but now Android Police has published a report detailing Google’s streaming music plans. The report claims that Google will soon launch a new service called YouTube Music Key, as well as rebrand Google Play Music All Access to Google Play Music Key.
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The report goes on to claim that YouTube Music Key will offer ad-free music, offline playback, and audio-only streaming. The last of those will be crucial for background and screen-off listening. YouTube Music Key will allegedly offer a 30-day free trial, after which you’ll be charged $9.99 a month for the service. That $9.99 fee includes access to Play Music Key, as well. Google has added “over 20 million high-quality tracks – complete albums, organized into artist discographies” specifically for Music Key.
The big differentiator for Music Key over the current Play Music All Access service is that Key will offer audio discographies, as well as concert footage, videos, covers, and remixes. Of course, Play Music currently offers some covers and remixes, but Music Key will open up users to a variety of new content due to its openness.
As Android Police notes, this could open up a huge opportunity for Google. Music Key will provide an opportunity for labels and users to take advantage of YouTube’s powerful and simple creation and curation models. The big selling point, of course, is that for $9.99, you get access to YouTube Music Key, and Play Music Key.
A specific launch date for the service is still undetermined at this point. Google has reportedly been hitting conflicts while negotiating contracts with Indie labels, but hopefully that will be resolved soon.