We've known for a while that YouTube is planning to launch its own music subscription service, but with its expected summer launch window having come and gone, it's all been a bit quiet recently. But the so-called "Music Key" service is still coming, and should arrive "soon" according to CEO Susan Wojciciki.
"I think there's a lot of opportunity," she said at the Recode Mobile conference. "It's amazing how much music we have. ... I remain optimistic that you can see it soon."
Perhaps...too much music? At least in terms of the number of formats on offer. Whereas Spotify deals in just audio tracks, YouTube will likely want to leverage its access to live concert footage and music videos too. Divvying up the access across differing pricing tiers must be quite a headache, and with indie labels feeling left out by YouTube's plans, it's sounding like a logistical nightmare.
However, in terms of audience, YouTube's potential here is vast -- it's the sole music service for huge numbers of teens the world over, a demographic that's been traditionally difficult to convince to part with cash when it comes to digital streaming services. If YouTube can crack them, there's plenty of money to be made. [CNET]