VENICE BEACH, Calif. YouTube’s new stand-alone music app debuted this week, and while you may not have heard of it, or even downloaded it yet, don’t worry–you will.
The app, which is free, with ads, or $9.99 monthly for an ad-free experience that also lets you listen to music in the background on your phone while continuing to use other apps, has way more music than other services. YouTube Music has the latest music videos, and deals with the record labels for complete albums (the visual is the album cover) as well as live performances, late-night TV gigs and documentary footage you won’t find on Spotify or Apple Music.
If YouTube owner Google really wants to make Music huge, they could use their muscle, our panelists agreed.
“YouTube is the second most popular search engine in the world,” notes Michael Egan, the CEO of Spark Networks, which owns popular dating sites JDate and Christian Mingle. “Google can put this in front of a lot of people and really push it.”
Since launching in June, Apple Music has struggled to find a willing audience of folks eager to try it’s new monthly subscription service. with 15 million folks signing up for the trial, and 6.5 million agreeing to pay the monthly charge. By comparison, Google launched it’s new Photos app in May, and while it is free, the company has seen massive growth–it recently announced downloads of over 100 million.
Alexandra Keating, the CEO of DWNLD.me, an app to make apps, says Google could be more aggressive than Apple in getting folks to pay for their subscriptions.
YouTube could lower the quality of the video, make it an arduous ad experience and “annoy the user so much people will want to pay for it,” she said.
But is it worth it to spend $9.99 monthly for the YouTube Music service? Most of our panelists said yes.
“It includes Red,” said Saba Hamedy, a reporter for the Mashable tech blog. YouTube’s Red subscription service entails music, gaming and original programming from YouTube stars beginning in January. “There’s a lot of good stuff coming,” she said. “”And I like the in-background feature. That used to bug me a lot when I would try and listen and do other things.”
Also on this week’s #talkingtech: we introduce you to on-demand barbers for men, with the new Hairdoo app, weighed in on why the Tinder dating app may be worth $3 billion and dating in the digital age with Egan and the panel. We also discussed Facebook;’s new ultra-annoying Notify Me app, and looked DWNLD, the app for creating an app in minutes. We actually created an app using DWNLD during the show.
#talkingtechLIVE airs Thursdays on TuneIn at 8 p.m. ET and is archived for later listening here, and on iTunes, Stitcher, SoundCloud and TuneIn.
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