First Netflix, then Disney, and now yet another company in the streaming wars has announced they will be increasing the cost of its subscriptions: YouTube Premium.
AKA the one where you pay for a platform that most people use for free.
A YouTube Premium subscription allows a user to watch videos on the platform without ads, as well as the added perk of background play, and some other benefits.
For this ad-free lifestyle individual users previously paid a monthly fee of $11.99.
However after the hike they will soon be paying a noticeably higher fee of $16.99 per month.
Additionally, the price of a family subscription plan — which allows multiple users — has been raised from $17.99 to $32.99. That’s a price rise of 83 per cent!
In comparison, last December the cost of a Disney+ subscription was raised from $11.99 a month to $13.99 a month.
Now YouTube, I love you. But you don’t let me watch New Girl or How I Met Your Mother unless it’s multiple minute-long vertical clips. You think I’m about to pay even more to NOT be able to watch those shows? Ya dreaming.
This is the first ever increase in price for YouTube Premium to happen in Australia. Prices have also been raised in Argentina, Austria, Chile, Germany, Poland, and Turkey.
YouTube Premium has always been the forgotten sibling of the streaming platforms, the odd one out, or the ugly duckling that is yet to blossom into a swan. It’s always been mocked.
The internet is always plentiful with memes about how users are so opposed to ever paying for YouTube Premium, a site that has allowed you to watch free content since its creation in 2005.
Given that the only benefit of a premium subscription is no ads then the product is essentially useless given that the same feat can also achieved by installing an ad-blocker.
However, YouTube has also announced this week that they would be cracking down on the use of these ad-blockers. Meaning that a YouTube Premium subscription will be the most convenient, if not only way to watch YouTube without constant interruption.
And it’s almost tempting TBH. Honestly, the amount of ads on before and during and after a video now, it’s like why even bother without an ad-blocker. This smells awfully like a two-pronged approach to driving up profits for the company.
The response to the price hike in Australia has not been a positive one. Despite the fact that some people will not be impacted by the increase for three months, it’s still got a lot of those few who DO use the service fuming.
“Thought it was a practical joke, a massive price hike,” wrote a user on a Reddit post about the hike.
“I have been a paying customer since 2015 when I was paying for Google Music. I’m not impressed, what happened to rewarding customer loyalty?” asked another.
In the email to users, YouTube stated that the reason for the rise in costs is because the extra money will allow them to “continue to improve YouTube Premium and support the creators and artists you watch on YouTube.”
YouTube’s net worth is estimated to be at around $29-30 billion USD.
But hey, I’m really glad to be able to help out and give them my five dollars extra a week. Sounds like they really need it.
Meanwhile, if you are on the prowl for a free streaming service, our brand new sexy chaotic TV channel Pedestrian Television is streaming on 9NOW for the monthly price of ZERO buckaroos, and has all the bonkers content YouTube Premium wouldn’t dream of giving away for free.