24 December 2019
As announced about three months ago, YouTube has announced YouTube Originals content will become free to watch but ad-supported starting September 24th. The team has decided to offer a freemium model in addition to the existing premium model with the hope of converting free users into paying subscribers.
This new model will include all sorts of YouTube Originals content like TV shows, movies, and live events for free but you will have to go through ads in between. It is same as watching any other video on YouTube video where you get ads in the beginning and at different points as the video progresses. But ads are not only caveat included in the freemium model.
All paying subscribers will get to watch all Originals episodes in one go which is the way binge-watchers prefer to watch. But for free users, episodes will be released one at a time and they will have to wait until a new episode is released. This is like how shows work on traditional TV channels. Additionally, premium users will get features like download support for offline viewing and exclusive bonus content like director's cuts and extra scenes (wherever available).
It should be noted that the freemium model will be applicable for all Originals content released after September 24th. For the content released prior to this date, only select ones will be made available for free and that too as and when YouTube would like to do so. You can check the complete availability of Originals shows by visiting the official support page.
Other than these changes, YouTube Premium remains the same service it was before. There are no changes to any of the existing features and even the pricing remains the same. It means if you wish to be a paid subscriber and get all the special benefits, you can be one by paying $11.99 per month which also includes YouTube Music Premium.