YouTube Music begins its ascent: ‘The potential prize here is huge’

The world has a new music subscription streaming service: YouTube Music has started its global rollout today (May 22), arriving in the US, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand and South Korea.

As part.of its official announcement of the service last week, YouTube acknowledged that over 1 billion people each month access its platform to play music.

Just how many of those will be converted into subscribers remains to be seen, but Warner Music’s CEO of Recorded Music Max Lousada is bullish about the opportunity.

“The potential prize here is huge,” he said, calling the launch an “important step in recognizing the power of artists, their music and the value they create”.

Meanwhile, Kobalt CEO Willard Ahdritz predicted that YouTube Music “will positively impact artists with the billions of consumers [YouTube reaches] across the globe”.

Michael Nash, Executive Vice President of Digital Strategy at Universal Music Group, welcomed the launch as “an important milestone that should broaden consumer choice, promote competition, optimize artists’ engagement with audiences and support fair compensation for music creators.”

“Music has helped attract a global audience of almost two billion to YouTube, so the potential prize here is huge.

“[youtube music] is an important step in recognizing the power of artists, their music, and the value they create.”

max lousada, warner music

Lousada continued: “Music has helped attract a global audience of almost two billion to YouTube, so the potential prize here is huge.

“The original way the service brings together music and video, as well as its big launch campaign, shows YouTube is making a commitment to subscription.

“It’s an important step in recognizing the power of artists, their music, and the value they create.”

Ahdritz said: “From day one, I’ve been supportive of YouTube’s video platform and its ability to drive the music industry forward.

“I’m excited [YouTube is] now monetizing their great platform with an improved subscription service.”

willard ahdritz, kobalt

“I’m excited they are now monetizing their great platform with an improved subscription service.

“I’m confident it will positively impact artists with the billions of consumers they reach across the globe.

“We look forward to working closely with them and all their great data to ultimately help artists and creators further their careers.”

Nash added: “We welcome the launch of YouTube Music.

“This important milestone should broaden consumer choice, promote competition, optimize artists’ engagement with audiences and support fair compensation for music creators.”

michael nash, universal music group

“This important milestone should broaden consumer choice, promote competition, optimize artists’ engagement with audiences and support fair compensation for music creators.

“UMG’s licensing strategy is focused on achieving those objectives to the benefit of the entire music ecosystem.

The audio-visual platform is a relaunch of the YouTube Music brand as an app and desktop player and offers both an ad-supported and $9.99-per-month premium tier.

It will compete with established players Spotify and Apple Music, which have over 115 million paying subscribers between them.

There is both an ad-supported free tier and a $9.99-per-month package called YouTube Music Premium.

The service will also soon be launching in Austria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

Subscribers will be able to find music videos, official albums, singles, remixes, live performances, covers and ‘hard-to-find music you can only get on YouTube’.

A home screen adapts to provide recommendations based on what users have played before, where they are and what they are doing.

There are thousands of playlists across any genre, mood or activity, while a smart search function helps find songs without the need for titles.

A dedicated Hotlist screen shows the most popular videos in the world right now; in the US, Anderson.Paak, Jessie Reyez and G-Eazy are currently featured.

Paid members can download music and listen ad-free and in the background, while an Offline Mixtape automatically downloads songs.

Music Business Worldwide

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