YouTube is rolling out its premium music and video subscription service to the UK and 11 other territories, enabling users in those countries to access ad-free, downloadable content and putting it on a collision course with the likes of Spotify, Apple Music and Tidal.
Movie subscribers will also be able to take advantage of a feature known as ‘background play’ where videos play on uninterrupted even when another app is opened. Around 65 exclusive video series are also available on YouTube Red, with the provider promising new material on a weekly basis.
Music devotees meanwhile, will benefit from a redesigned mobile app and desktop interface with a new emphasis on music discovery, with new content teased directly from the home screen based on individual listening patterns, location and activity.
Seeking further differentiation Google also claims to offer a more advanced search facility than its rivals which is capable of second guessing mistyped, misremembered and mispronounced songs to home in on the desired track.
YouTube Music is available for £9.99 per month, a figure which rises to £11.99 per month for YouTube Premium, which also includes video - although a three-month free trial is available. Households of up to six family members able sign-up on a one-month free trial plus £17.99 per month.
YouTube is seeking to reduce its reliance on advertisers as it emerges from a damaging brand safety scandal.