Mid-last year, Google announced YouTube Music, their streaming platform that’s set to take Spotify’s crown. The service just announced their launch in Singapore, making it the 78th country where it’s available. For context, Spotify is available in 79 countries, while Apple Music is available in 115 countries.
What sets YouTube Music apart from its competitors is the access to a catalogue with remixes, live concerts, song covers, and music videos that the others might not have. When you’re on the app, you can also easily toggle between listening to the song and watching the music video for the track.
There are two tiers of YouTube Music, Basic and Premium. As with any other freemium service, the basic tier has advertisements interspersed between songs. Playback is also restricted to the app only, meaning that your music will pause when you leave the app or lock your phone. Your music will also be streamed in a lower quality.
The premium version gets rid of all those restrictions from just S$9.98 a month. Plus, you can download your music for offline streaming (super handy on flights or where mobile data is weak)
You must now be thinking: Why should I sign up for another streaming service? Here, we help you break down some reasons as to why you should or shouldn’t subscribe to YouTube Music
Reasons to subscribe to YouTube Music
If you already spend a couple of hours each day binging random YouTube videos that get recommended to you, maybe you could give YouTube Music a shot – they’re offering a free 1-month trial for the premium version.
Or maybe you love watching music videos, preferring to appreciate music through two dimensions rather than one. The wide variety of music videos available on the platform is staggering. They even have a chart tracking the popularity of music videos in each country so you can have a feel of what’s on the local beat.
But perhaps the most compelling reason to subscribe to YouTube Music is if you’re already an Android user. The monthly price (S$9.98) is only available through the Google Play Store, and users in the ecosystem should take advantage of that.
Reasons to not subscribe to YouTube Music
We get it, migrating your entire music library to another platform is a daunting task. Plus, if you’re just listening to music, Spotify and Apple Music do pretty well on their own. YouTube Music hasn’t disclosed exactly how big its library is, although we’re guessing it’s close to Spotify’s 35 million and Apple’s 50 million.
Also, if you’re an Apple user, there’s really no financially-driven decision to get the premium plan for YouTube Music. It costs S$12.98 per month for iOS users. While the difference might just be less than a cold brew from Starbucks, the fact that other platforms are offering the same, if not more, for cheaper, shouldn’t have you thinking twice. Apple Music already has a wide curation of music videos available, and Spotify has a built-in podcast category.
Spotify has also been deeply integrated into Samsung devices since the start of the year. Not only is the app pre-installed on its flagship phones, but playback is also seamless across all the Samsung devices in your home.
So… should you?
The only people we can see subscribing to YouTube Music are those already on Android and have access to the Google Play Store. There’s no convincing reason as to why iPhone users should pay more, and they shouldn’t.
Until Google and YouTube refine their service to make it more accessible to people outside their ecosystem, we’d stick to our current subscriptions for now.