We’ve heard for quite some time now that YouTube wanted to explore an ad-free subscription service. The concept is simple: you pay money, you don’t get annoying ads at the beginning, end or sometimes middle of a video.
Google has been hesitant come out and confirm anything, but it looks like they’ve finally let the cat out of the bag. Several partnered YouTubers have reported receiving emails from the company informing them of a forthcoming subscription service that will allow their viewers to pay good coin to dodge those annoying ads that play when you watch a video.
The email was scarce on any details about the service such as cost, but Google did note that partners would be able to get in on the new revenue stream (which was the whole reason for them sending this notice — it will create significant changes to the company’s standing terms of service policies).
Google is already providing a similar option in the same ballpark called the YouTube Music Key. It’s a $10 per month service that lets users access music videos ad-free, as well as cache them for offline viewing should an internet connection fail to be available. Extending a similar service for the entirety of the video content on YouTube would be a big deal for those who absolutely loathe having to view ads (even if most of them can be skipped after 5 seconds).
The timing of the announcement might indicate that Google is getting ready to pilot the service this year, though without any hard details your guess is just as good as ours. We imagine any formal announcements will be saved for Google IO so stay tuned!