YouTube is Exploring the Idea of Introducing an Ad-Free Platform
On Monday night at Re/code’s Code/Mobile conference in San Francisco, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki announced that the Google-owned platform is thinking about launching an ad-free subscription service. “We’re thinking about giving users options,” she said.
The giant video-sharing website that allows billions of users to upload, watch, and share originally created videos is ad-supported at the moment. This allows YouTube services to be free. However, Wojcicki says, “there’s going to be a point where people don’t want to see the ads.”
Rumors of a subscription service for YouTube have been swirling around for years. It makes sense for YouTube to compete with streaming video competitors such as Netflix and Hulu and music subscription sites, such as Pandora and Spotify, that give users the option to either keep a free service with ads or remove the ads at the cost of a small monthly fee.
But, a likely consequence of a YouTube subscription service is that there could be a higher ad load on the free service. Extra intrusive advertising on the free version could tempt users to pay to remove them or draw users away from the platform altogether.
YouTube does currently offer a small paid subscription service, but it does not exclude ads. The service simply allows content creators to charge users a fee (starting at $0.99 per month) to access full episodes of Sesame Street, for example. YouTube is planning to expand this subscription service to offer more qualified video content without the distription of advertising.
Wojcicki did not offer any details on the new subscription service and whether or not content creators would benefit from this new model is still up in the air. It seems that YouTube’s subscription service is in its early stages. Nonetheless, it may be a great move for YouTube since it would allow users a choice on whether or not they want see the advertising and get users to spend more time viewing video on the platform. YouTube continues to grow about 50% year-over-year. The Viking of virtual video is merely just exploring its growth options.