Initially named YouTube Red, the name was soon changed to YouTube Premium in 2018. This media platform is the paid-for version of YouTube and YouTube Music that guarantees no ads and a more diverse library than what is available to the free YouTube users.
Subscribers pay a monthly fee of $11.99 to enjoy this service and while some people may look at this as a steep fee, it is a good deal for what it offers. Under YouTube premium, users get a lot more high-quality as well as varied content than they do on the free tier which makes it a good choice for the cord-cutters as well.
With that in mind, let’s see what advantages and disadvantages YouTube Premium has to help consumers out decide on whether or not to subscribe.
- The first advantage that users of this premium version have is that they do not have to put up with the endless ads that are found on the free versions of YouTube. Their content which consists of both audio and video music files plays continuously without any interruption whatsoever. It’s the perfect answer for YouTube users who want to enjoy the YouTube they know and love without having their playlist interrupted.
- Under YouTube Premium, users get to watch original content made only for YouTube viewers, and this content is referred to as YouTube Originals. The target audience may not be the same as other popular streaming services who produce their content, but they have to start somewhere. Currently, some of these original shows on YouTube Premium include Cobra Kai, Impulse, and Lazer Team, and they mostly target young adults. As an incentive, some of these shows will let users watch the first few episodes at no charge.
- On YouTube Premium, users can download music and listen to it while offline. This feature is not available in the free version. It comes in handy when users find themselves in locations with neither service nor internet connectivity. There’s a ‘Download’ option under each video, and once you tap it, these videos are downloaded at a resolution of up to 1080p which is impressively clear.
- Under YouTube Premium, users also get Google Play. But if you already have a subscription for Google Play, then you don’t have to subscribe to the YouTube Premium since they are both under Google. All subscribers of Google Play Music automatically get YouTube Premium while all YouTube Premium subscribers also get Google Play and YouTube Music Premium. This is an excellent offer for those looking to get value for their money.
- Users can play music videos in the background even when they move on to other apps on their screen. This switching between apps is not possible on the free version of YouTube which stops the videos from playing instead. Meanwhile, on YouTube Premium, users can compose emails and texts as well as play their video games (on mute), all the while listening to the audio from Premium.
- When it comes to the availability of this streaming service, it is limited compared to the old YouTube version. YouTube Premium is currently only available in a little over 60 countries although the number is still growing.
- Another downside is that not only do you have to pay for this service but a lot of people find the price of $11.99 a bit steep compared to other streaming services like Netflix. And most users tend to feel that this price is only sensible for those who will continuously enjoy all the services in the package, including YouTube Originals.
- Unlike other services, Premium does not offer discounts on any of their subscriptions. The monthly fee stands throughout your usage without any offers of saving money through one-time payments. So whether you make payments every month or once a year, the total remains the same.
- There are few extras included in the subscription. However, these do not include rentals, or charged station subscriptions. Additionally, Premium has no features like lyrics to the songs or extra information that you might like to know about the videos you’re watching. These are all small but significant extras that services like Spotify have and their users appreciate.