YouTube Music app is finally here: background playback, smart search, and more

For Rs 99 per month, audiophiles can stream music on YouTube Music Premium, and for a subscription of Rs 129 per month they can access YouTube originals like Cobra Kai, and BTS: Burn The Stage.

The battle of music streaming in India just got a little more interesting. YouTube, which already enjoys a king’s share in the video streaming space in the country, joined the music streaming market on Tuesday, launching the YouTube Music app, and YouTube Music Premium for its users.

With this, the Google-owned company joins the ranks of Swedish music giant Spotify and a host of global as well as homegrown firms like Gaana, Reliance’s JioSaavn, Wynk, and Amazon Prime in India’s booming music streaming space. The streaming app comes packed with an array of services, and includes official songs, albums, thousands of playlists, and artists, and YouTube’s tremendous catalogue of remixes, live performances, covers, and music videos.

“While fans can enjoy the new ad-supported version of YouTube Music for free, we’re also launching YouTube Music Premium, a paid membership that allows you to play a YouTube music video in the background,” the company announced on its official blog post. This means, users can toggle between apps, write a text message, or even lock the phone screen and still be able to play a YouTube music video; a feature that was unavailable on the video streaming platform until now.

YouTube Music’s premium service comes with an option for offline downloads and an ad-free experience for a subscription, starting Rs 99 per month. Apart from the vast library of music, the app packs in a feature called smart search for the audiophiles. Whether you want to search a song by its lyrics or simply look for “that rap song with the flute”, YouTube has got you covered. And the best part is, all of this will be accessible to a subscriber of Google Play Music.

“To extend the features of YouTube Music Premium beyond the music app, we’re also introducing YouTube Premium.”

In addition to ad-free, background, and offline playback, with YouTube Premium users can access all YouTube originals like Cobra kai, BTS: Burn The Stage, at a fee of Rs 129 a month.

This is undoubtedly going to hot up the ongoing battle of music streamers in India, which recently saw the entry of Spotify – within a week of its launch, the app claimed to have crossed the one-million mark. But YouTube can still have a fair shot, thanks to its huge user base in video streaming, and popularity with addition of the T-Series channel.

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