Youtube Music recently hit 80 million Music and Premium subscribers. which is a huge 30 million member increase in only a year. Youtube Music has gained a lot of popularity due to its ad-free premium subscription and other perks like afterparties and discounts on Google products. Cost-wise, this is a more competitive option than its previous iterations. While it still doesn’t hold a candle to Spotify’s 200 million subscribers, it is really clear that it is gearing itself up to act as some serious competition to the streaming giant.
YouTube is working to expand its platform over the next year or so. It has introduced another suite of tools inside Youtube Studio that allows content creators to create podcasts from inside the platform. It also includes a move to not just have video podcasts on their site but also just pure audio podcasts. This goes directly in line with both Apple Podcasts and Google Podcasts, as well as Spotify.
YouTube has also been making moves in terms of developing its partnerships for YouTube music. It has collaborated with several business partners to provide users with access to YouTube Music’s vast 100 million song database. Alongside its services of Premium and Music through its Google One platform, the company has developed ties across the world. Some of the partnerships are with Samsung, LG, and Softbank in Asia and Vodafone in Europe.
Users can expect some quality-of-life updates to come to the platform, like identifiers for audio-only podcasts and ad-supported listening. It does seem like, at least for now, YouTube is far more interested in developing the right sort of platform for its creators and listeners than focusing on exclusives for the platform. Whether or not this will turn the tide in the war against podcast dominance against Spotify, we will just have to wait and see.