YouTube Music Key (desktop 001)

Google-owned YouTube on Wednesday announced a long-rumored service which lets you stream ad-free music, play tracks in the background through mobile apps for iOS/Android and on, mark individual music videos and other clips for offline playback and much more, in exchange for a flat monthly fee of ten bucks per month.

Dubbed YouTube Music Key, it’s releasing in beta next week.

The service integrates with Google’s existing subscription music service called Play Music (formerly Google Play All Access), which includes more than 30 million songs. If you’ll be taking Music Key for a spin when it launches, Google will treat you to a promotional subscription fee of eight bucks per month.

“To turn YouTube into your perfect music service, we’re launching YouTube Music Key as a beta with our biggest music fans first, and then we’ll bring YouTube Music Key to the whole world together,” reads an announcement post over at the official YouTube blog.

YouTube’s mobile apps on iOS and Android will be refreshed with a brand new section focusing on music videos, trending music, mood-based playlists, artist pages and full-length albums.

“In the coming days, you’ll be able to see an artist’s discography on YouTube, and play a full album with both their official music videos and high-quality songs our music partners added to YouTube,” said the team.

Check out the promo clip below.

Those who get invited to use the service will enjoy six months of unlimited streaming at no cost. “If you see an invite in your app or email, try it out for six months for free.”

Here’s what it looks on mobile (sorry, they didn’t have iOS screenshots).

YouTube Music Key (mobile 001)

To register your interest in the beta, go here.

As a nice bonus, signing up for Google Play Music gets you immediate access to the YouTube Music Key beta, the Internet giant underscored. This means that paying Google Music customers will get Music Key as a free addition to their existing subscription.

Again, YouTube Music Key is currently in beta and only available in the United States, United Kingdom, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Finland and Ireland.

[Official YouTube Blog]

  • I don’t understand why Google can’t just add background music to YouTube without paying for it.

    • Fanboy 

      Jailbreak your iPhone, and download “Youtubed” from Cydia. Dont give these greedy b*astards a single penny.

      • Antzboogie

        Exactly or Protube and Adblocker.

      • AnArcticMonkey

        Yeah! Screw Google for trying to make money! YouTube is free to run, and Google has enough money so they should just dissolve the YouTube portion of their cash flow! Apple too, how dare they take a percentage of app sales, those greedy plebs! And developers, why would we pay for something that is virtual!

        I hope you are able to pick up the sarcasm in my comment, and why your statement is utterly ludicrous.

      • Don’t for one moment compare Apple with Google because Apple doesn’t violate your privacy at every possible moment. With Google they are making you the product at every single possible moment by gathering data on you to push targeted advertisements upon you. Either Google uses advertisements to make money or they charge money for stuff to make money but they shouldn’t do both…

      • Tracey Mustaca

        you are ignorant ! Musicians and originators of music deserve to be paid- do you want to work hard ? more than 40 hours a week – create amazing music and have everyone get it for free while you have to pay for everything even to get it on these sites? You should pay for the music so the originaltors can get paid. YOu are ludicrous !

      • yungcinnabun

        Its free though

    • Mr.Coolfreak

      I’m assuming they legally can’t do that

      • udovoodoo

        They can. MXTube does it, available on App STore.

      • Sleetui

        They “cache” the videos. Not download XD

    • Julioz

      You can use McTube free from the App Store

      • Sandro Michailidis

        Where do you live , because i can’t see ( download ) it from the app store on my iphone . I’m from Belgium and i already tried and set my country to US

      • Blip dude

        Seems like McTube might have been removed from the App Store, because it is no longer there. Sucks really!! Considering that it apparently has a nasty bug at the moment (I have no issues with it). What I love most about it has a similar UI from the YouTube from the iOS 5 and below days.

      • Julioz

        I just checked and it seems to have been removed from the App Store. Sorry.

    • udovoodoo

      MxTube from App Store allows background playback without any issues. YouToube could offer this, but they would prefer to make you pay for it nomsayin. But Youtube is limited to 256 kbps no? Better to use Spotify premium at 320kbps – and cheaper

      • Ken

        MXtube and mctube have been both removed from the AppStore in the US.

    • john diaz

      They can but they won’t because all these greedy bastards want money that’s what it’s all about. the word “free” no longer exists .
      did it ever!

      • No it never existed. Instead they sold advertisements using data and analytics gathered on you while you were using the Internet…

      • Tracey Mustaca

        figure it out-the people who create the music and those who support it must get paid for their time and talent. why don’t you do your job for free and give all your products away just to be seen or heard. Taylor Swift is doing the right thing supporting artists rights to their pay for their work . ignorance is bliss

    • GuyBey0ndC00L

      You can load YouTube from Safari (iOS) play it in the background no jailbreak needed. First World problem fix.

  • Michael Cruz

    Why is everything about money now? -.-

    • udovoodoo

      It’s always been about money. It’s just that greed knows no limits, it expands.

      • john diaz

        very well said sir

  • Anmol Malhotra

    I’ve always been an Apple fan but Google killed it with Material Design on Android L.. iOS 8 design aesthetics seems old to me now. I really wish Apple did something like that on iOS 7. :/

    • Danny Rios

      I agree. I like the Android L .. But Im still a apple fan. I love apple, I just wish they’d add some cool new features I dont know :/ needs to be more alive!

    • R4

      Material design or not, almost all android apps are designed for 5 inch screens and scaled up or down from 4 inches to 10. It doesn’t look pretty.

    • Stijn

      Material design is quite nice ( even though it copies quite a couple things from iOS) but not as refined as iOS. It still is android with its cheap apps, they mostly are so much whose than to iOS versions of apps

  • Keabsy

    I’m so wow’d at the fact that it’s available in Portugal.

  • Julioz

    Time for Taylor to remove her music from another site!

    • Tony Trenkle Jr.

      hahahaa This!

    • Tracey Mustaca

      right- no one should have to give their hard original work away for free !

      • Julioz

        I agree with you. I love Taylor.

      • Tracey Mustaca


  • Luke Mulholland

    Don’t tweaks on cydia do all of this anyway?

  • Virus

    Remember when this stuff was free back on iOS5 and before

  • Ian Leon

    If it’s really our music let us listen to it HOWEVER THE HELL WE DAMN WANT’!!!!

    • Tracey Mustaca

      ” Our ” Music ? Since when did it become yours ? It belongs to those who created it for enjoyment and pleasure- they deserve to be paid the artists get only a portion but the platforms also need money to exist. what do you do for nothing that costs you all you have and original thought and work?

  • udovoodoo

    About 1 billion users off youtube. If everyone bought this, that’s 10bil/month for Google. Too bad nobody is gonna buy it.

    • XZavier

      I wouldn’t be so sure about this, of course not everyone is going to buy it, but I am about 70% sure that at least 1000 people will buy this. AT LEAST

      • Tracey Mustaca

        good !

  • Ian Leon

    They’re jus scared because Apple has been secretly working on an awesome search engine that will kick Google butt.

    • George

      Isearch won’t be out for another 20 years

      • Ian Leon

        how do you know? They could’ve already been crawling masked as Googlebot. The fact that they started crawling from Apple could be a publicity stunt.

  • Chris Buck

    adblock 2 and mxtube;-)

  • Chang in Charge

    This is not surprising at all we knew this was coming. Services are always free in the beginning until they gain enough users or until the business figures out how to monetize the service. Nothing is free. And some people will pay for this … we’ll see how many. I’m sticking to Spotify Premium for 90% of my music and Itunes Match to upload rap mixtapes and tracks that can’t be found in Spotify.

    • Tracey Mustaca

      I hope you are working for free at your job. Spotify is stealing artists hard work-it costs money to produce original music. Try doing what you do for free- hmm you don’t want to? Youwant to eat? drive a car? have a life? Oh on what you do for a living ? Funny – that’s all artists need to do and youa re stealing their copyrighted content. Spotify is stealing content… why ask yourself would a company do this to the people who originalte this content… “You” have no rights to anything for free. ( that’s the royal You …

      • Chang in Charge

        I don’t work for free. And I don’t steal music. I pay for my music.

  • john diaz

    What a rip off!

  • White Michael Jackson

    Cant wait to hack it with flex

    • Straw hat

      Bahaa was thinking that

    • Tracey Mustaca

      it would be great if someone hacked the accounts where you work and took your pay check …how about that ? That sounds right doesn’t it ?

      • White Michael Jackson

        You cant take my paycheck if the job can just print a new one…

  • Buzz { Light:Year; }

    Luckily I still have mxtube

  • ThoseCurves

    whats the video with those black helmets ? that seems to be the only one i haven’t watched..

  • Edvard Rølvaag

    There are plenty of apps in the AppStore that offers online/offline audio playback with no ads already! For example Muze and iTube. This is useless…

  • iNeedANameHere

    I just always load it in safari hit the home button then press play in Control Center and it resumes playing the song in the background

  • GMUSIK805 .

    No wonder mc tube and mx tube ware removed

  • So, does that mean there’ll now be a subscription service to stop them from snooping into your gmail account?

  • Sleetui

    Can’t wait for a Jailbreak tweak to make it free ;D

  • AnArcticMonkey

    These comments are hilarious. Bu-but why would a corporation try to make even more money? Isn’t everything free? I suggest taking a business 101 class or something to anyone questioning Google here. They have no need to give background audio for free when they can get money out of it by bundling it together with another service.

  • Walter White

    Flex 2 is your way to go 😉

  • From the article you linked:

    On Apple’s end, the data you send in is grouped together under an anonymous ID that’s reset every 15 minutes, so it’s hard to trace it back to you. Likewise, all the data is transmitted over HTTPS, so it should be secure as it travels through the pipeline.


    Apple has a privacy policy up for the feature, and responded to The Verge with a statement:

    We are absolutely committed to protecting our users’ privacy and have built privacy right into our products. For Spotlight Suggestions we minimize the amount of information sent to Apple. Apple doesn’t retain IP addresses from users’ devices. Spotlight blurs the location on the device so it never sends an exact location to Apple. Spotlight doesn’t use a persistent identifier, so a user’s search history can’t be created by Apple or anyone else. Apple devices only use a temporary anonymous session ID for a 15-minute period before the ID is discarded.

    We also worked closely with Microsoft to protect our users’ privacy. Apple forwards only commonly searched terms and only city-level location information to Bing. Microsoft does not store search queries or receive users’ IP addresses.

    You can also easily opt out of Spotlight Suggestions, Bing or Location Services for Spotlight.

    Also this from Apples privacy page:

    A message from Tim Cook about Apple’s commitment to your privacy.

    At Apple, your trust means everything to us. That’s why we respect your privacy and protect it with strong encryption, plus strict policies that govern how all data is handled.

    Security and privacy are fundamental to the design of all our hardware, software, and services, including iCloud and new services like Apple Pay. And we continue to make improvements. Two-step verification, which we encourage all our customers to use, in addition to protecting your Apple ID account information, now also protects all of the data you store and keep up to date with iCloud.

    We believe in telling you up front exactly what’s going to happen to your personal information and asking for your permission before you share it with us. And if you change your mind later, we make it easy to stop sharing with us. Every Apple product is designed around those principles. When we do ask to use your data, it’s to provide you with a better user experience.

    We’re publishing this website to explain how we handle your personal information, what we do and don’t collect, and why. We’re going to make sure you get updates here about privacy at Apple at least once a year and whenever there are significant changes to our policies.

    A few years ago, users of Internet services began to realize that when an online service is free, you’re not the customer. You’re the product. But at Apple, we believe a great customer experience shouldn’t come at the expense of your privacy.

    Our business model is very straightforward: We sell great products. We don’t build a profile based on your email content or web browsing habits to sell to advertisers. We don’t “monetize” the information you store on your iPhone or in iCloud. And we don’t read your email or your messages to get information to market to you. Our software and services are designed to make our devices better. Plain and simple.

    One very small part of our business does serve advertisers, and that’s iAd. We built an advertising network because some app developers depend on that business model, and we want to support them as well as a free iTunes Radio service. iAd sticks to the same privacy policy that applies to every other Apple product. It doesn’t get data from Health and HomeKit, Maps, Siri, iMessage, your call history, or any iCloud service like Contacts or Mail, and you can always just opt out altogether.

    Finally, I want to be absolutely clear that we have never worked with any government agency from any country to create a backdoor in any of our products or services. We have also never allowed access to our servers. And we never will.

    Our commitment to protecting your privacy comes from a deep respect for our customers. We know that your trust doesn’t come easy. That’s why we have and always will work as hard as we can to earn and keep it.


    Also the EFF gives iMessage a high score in terms of the mass-marketing messaging services in existence with only dedicated secure chat clients gaining higher marks.

    Also why would Apple lie? If they were found it to be lying the backlash would be huge, they would lose many customers and their stocks would plummet. It doesn’t make sense for them to lie. This is how I know Apple is committed to protecting my privacy where possible.