The Music Market is undergoing one of the most revolutionary phases in the past fourteen years, and this is regarded as one of the most impactful changes. As big names become a part and contribute to the industry, the trends have changed, and there is a new way of working.
With new developments from Apple, Google, and Pandora, the market for on-demand music is going through an extremely different phase in its fourteen-year history. The contribution of the industry heavyweights proves that there is no room for growth in on-demand music industry. But contrary to the popular belief, the market is not moving in the direction of consolidation. Rather, it is moving sideways.
Big Daddies Guiding the Change in the Music Market
The most important development was pioneered by Google, as it took an important shift in strategy by launching YouTube for music. Looking from the user’s point of view, the best thing about YouTube is its huge library of content. Since 2011, when a breakthrough contract between major recording companies and YouTube was executed, the face of the music industry was massively changed. The agreement made YouTube the go-to place for music. It is the only place where you can find almost every song you want to hear. It is quite evident that YouTube is far more popular in the Music Market than any other platform.
Apart from YouTube, Google also operates another paid service called Google Play Music, which costs $10 per month for on-demand music subscription service, internet radio, paid download service via iTunes and Amazon, and your own personal MP3 library. Another fact that gives Google Play Music an edge over iTunes and Spotify is the existence of some features that are still unavailable in its contemporaries. It is a well-organized music application that runs on both iOS and Android.
New Strategies and Ideas
In spite of all this, Google seems to be struggling to achieve a coherent music offering status. It wants to make YouTube its music base, but that seems a distant possibility. In its quest to achieve the same, it launched YouTube Music Key, a paid-subscription service that would give users a “pure” music experience on YouTube without ads. It tried merging subscription Google Play Music accounts with YouTube Music Key accounts. The problem was that it was not promoted extensively by Google, and hence, didn’t generate much interest.
Now, Google has come up with a new strategy. It recently launched YouTube Red, a paid subscription that offers ad-free video service. People who have subscribed to Google Play music automatically get YouTube Red subscriptions. Google also ditched the YouTube Music Key for a simpler YouTube Music.
YouTube Music has two flavors. One is the free version that is standard YouTube with search results focused on music and music-oriented recommendations, but a YouTube Red subscriber gets some additional features with YouTube Music. There are no ads, and you can save songs for offline listening. It also lets you listen to the audio while using other apps on your phone or tablet, unlike standard YouTube.