17 March 2023
YouTube Music is a popular music streaming service but when compared to rivals like Spotify, it needs to do a lot more and we have information about what it plans to do next. Kai Chuk, Head of Podcasting for YouTube, has confirmed the team is working on adding podcasts to YouTube Music. He revealed plans while talking to Ariel Shapiro at the Hot Pod Summit.
Chuk said they already have a solution for those who want to watch a podcast. This is in reference to numerous video-format podcasts available on YouTube. It is the music streaming app YouTube Music that does not offer podcasts yet unlike Spotify which has been offering them for quite some time. The rival has even signed exclusive license deals with some of the popular creators to keep the audience engaged on the app.
The team's aim is to provide a "great experience" even for audio-only podcast listeners. This is the reason it will offer background listening even to free users of the service. However, free access will be ad-supported due to obvious reasons. All podcast content will have a special badge which will make it easier for users to differentiate them from music content.
A YouTube spokesperson told TechCrunch,
“We will soon start to bring both audio and video-first podcasts to YouTube Music for users in the U.S., making podcasts more discoverable and accessible, with more regions to come. This will help make the podcasts that users already love on YouTube, available in all the places they want to listen.”
If we talk about numbers, YouTube Music and Premium have over 80 million subscribers as reported in November. Spotify in comparison has 200 million subscribers which is way more than YouTube.
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