Published: Wed, March 13, 2019
Life&Culture | By Sue Mclaughlin

Ad-free YouTube Premium launched in South Africa

Ad-free YouTube Premium launched in South Africa

Barely two weeks after the launch of Spotify, Google has jumped right into the mix with the surprise launch of YouTube Music in India. Get YouTube Music Premium to listen ad-free, in the background and on-the-go with downloads. The service essentially allows users access to ad-free, offline viewing experience across different YouTube, YouTube Music, YouTube Gaming, and YouTube Kids.

The best part, of course, is that unlike Apple Music, Spotify and other such services, YouTube Music will highlight works from everyone, including covers, remixes and lives, from the freshest of voices to the most established of singers. With the launch of YouTube Music, users in India will now be able to listen to their favorite music, explore new music, and get a personalized feed, catering to their preferences.

YouTube Music is as the name suggests, built on top of YouTube. Here's how YouTube Music and YouTube Premium differ.

"We know that India loves watching music videos on YouTube - be it the vibrancy, choreography, stars and glamour", added T.Jay Fowler, Director of Product Management, Music Products at YouTube, about the streaming service's launch in the country. There is also an introductory offer of three months free subscription for YouTube Music Premium, but it will only be available to the users who have never previously tried or used any of YouTube or Google's music streaming services.

Some of the features includes personalised recommendation, pre-made playlists across genre, mood, activity, or language.

Ad-free YouTube Premium launched in South Africa

An AI search feature will let you search for songs using descriptions and lyrics, which should make for a very interesting experience.

The internet giant will also look to move the paid subscribers of Google Play Music to YouTube Music, although it didn't disclose any specific timeline for this shift.

YouTube Premium will be available for ₹129 a month and will include membership to YouTube Music Premium. Users can find all their downloads, saved music, recently played tracks, subscribed artists and playlists under the "Library" tab and can adjust number of songs to download and more in their download settings. The interface is a simple black and keeps it easy to navigate from the home screen to the Library and search tabs.

India is one of the leading markets for YouTube in terms of consumption. Earlier called YouTube Red, this service offers ad-free playback and access to YouTube's cache or original shows and movies.

YouTube Music Premium membership is Rs 99 per month per user. YouTube Premium's possible competitors in the country will be the likes of Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hotstar, Voot and ZEE5 to name a few.

Spotify Premium now gets Hulu thrown in - but act fast
Starting Tuesday, now subscribers can activate the Hulu bundle or link their current account at the Your Services page on Spotify. Likewise, this bundle is specifically for Spotify individual memberships and doesn't stack with a family subscription.

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