According to a report out of The Wall Street Journal, YouTube is looking to gain streaming rights to TV shows and movies in an effort to compete more directly with services like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Video. YouTube executives have reportedly been meeting with Hollywood studios over recent months to discuss licensing content.
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According to the report, YouTube hopes to add the content it is able to license to its YouTube Red package. YouTube Red launched recently and is the company’s $9.99 per month service that provides access to things like ad-free videos, Play Music, and offline streaming.
Talks between studios and YouTube are still in the early stages, the report claims. It’s unclear what studios the company has been in talks with and what studios with which it hasn’t communicated. One studio, however, says it has yet to hear from YouTube regarding interest in licensing content.
YouTube has a healthy advantage when it comes to negotiating with studios. Google Play and YouTube deal makers work out of the same office in Beverley Hills and YouTube is said to be working closely with its Google Play partners to negotiate with studios.
As part of the YouTube Red package announced in October, YouTube announced a handful of new original content with YouTube partners like Joey Graceffa, PewDiePie, and Fine Brothers Entertainment. While the company is clearly interested in that arena, it looks as if it wants to bolster Red with even more offerings from the major studios.