YouTube Music Key hits All Access subscribers, Play Music gets YouTube integration


Google Play Music YouTube Music Key

It was almost a week ago today Google finally took the wraps off of YouTube Music Key, making it official after it was originally leaked back in August.  Still in beta, the new service gives YouTube users the ability to download music videos to their device for offline playback, and an ad-free listening experience.

YouTube Music Key screenshots

The best part? Anyone who’s already signed up for Google Play Music All Access is in, just make sure you’ve updated to the latest YouTube via Google Play. After that, you should see a new option in the sidebar menu, with quick access to offline videos, as well as a few new settings relating to background and offline play. There’s even a few options in there to pick exactly where you want offline videos stored, as well as an internal storage bar to help you stay on top of your device’s available space.

Google Play Music YouTube Music Key

Because Google Play Music All Access subscribers also get to enjoy the benefits of YouTube Music Key, you’ll now find music video links when playing videos, as well as a little YouTube icon in the now playing bar at the bottom, indicating when a YouTube video is available for that track. When viewing an artist’s album, scrolling down to the bottom will also reveal some quick thumbnails for their music videos as well.

In and of itself, YouTube Music Key may not sound like a huge value, but when choosing between Google Play Music and all the other music streaming services out there (Rdio, Spotify, Beats), having unhindered access to YouTube’s vast music video portfolio is one helluva incentive for music lovers. Now, give me a material designed YouTube and then maybe we can talk.

Chris Chavez
I've been obsessed with consumer technology for about as long as I can remember, be it video games, photography, or mobile devices. If you can plug it in, I have to own it. Preparing for the day when Android finally becomes self-aware and I get to welcome our new robot overlords.

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  1. I discovered I had this last night. I do find it very odd that there was no notification, whatsoever. Not even an email.

  2. Because I discovered video kept playing in the background.

  3. I’m using it right now to play around with it.

    It’s pretty freaking awesome.

    They need to extend the normal controls for Play Music (Next Track, Previous Track, Pause, Thumb Up, Thumb Down) thought when in Video mode.

    Having to hit the back arrow to get back to the regular non video track version to use controls kind of sucks.

    1. Yeah it’s pretty slick. Could be a game changer if they actually market this correctly. I’m assuming in 3 months from now we’ll have another update since this is beta. We’ll see.

  4. All I want from play music is for it to Play Music. Why is there no option to shut off all the extra visual stuff it insists on downloading? Eye candy just pisses me off when it causes the audio stream to stop and buffer.

    1. Still on dialup? Or 2G?

      1. Out in the real world there are plenty of places with weak 4G, 3G or slow wifi. I’m paying for the music service. Google should let me turn off all the nonessential junk that interferes with the music.

        1. I have very weak signal at my desk at work (usually 3G, occasionally I’ll get LTE), and have no problems streaming there. The only “extra visual stuff” is the album art, which is a tiny jpeg. I agree there ought to be an option to turn it off though, as there’s no reason for it when you’re just listening to the music and not actually looking at your phone.

  5. Oddly, this only works on my first YouTube channel and not on additional channels linked to my account.

  6. A material design for YouTube would be nice, but I’m still waiting on the new version of GP Music that had all those spiffy animations and finally has a now playing screen where the album art isn’t blown way up. I don’t know about ya’ll but I prefer seeing all of the album art and at the proper resolution.

  7. This is an amazingly useful and awesome feature set. Google needs to market the heck out of this before the haters take over.

  8. – YouTube Music Key FREE for everyone

  9. This is great, I am finding I can offline some non-music videos too which is what I was hoping!!

    1. Looks, like it is working for some non-music videos too!

  10. Now…we need a “repeat” mode for YouTube, especially if something is offline, I have faith that this is coming soon!

  11. Does anyone know how to tell when viewing a video on the web if it is going to show up as downloadable on mobile?

    This video for instance is downloadable on mobile but when I view on desktop it doesn’t have the “Ad-free” badge on it like the music videos do such as this one It makes it unpredictable to build a playlist on the desktop with the goal of offlining it.

    Basically, the “Ad-free” badge seems like it could be a good indicator but it isn’t 100% accurate.

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