Till date, Google has been providing users with a couple of music streaming applications — Google Play Music and YouTube Music. While the former is known to all, the latter has failed to gain mass popularity (even among Android users). Thus, Google is now looking to simplify this situation by combining the teams of the said music streaming apps into a single unit.
First reported by The Verge, merger of product teams at Google Play Music and YouTube Music was being reported by sources aware of the development. But the said move has now been confirmed by the technology giant itself, who cites the delivery of “the best possible product for our users, music partners, and artists” as the primary reason. Also, YouTube being more synonymous to video streaming could be seen as another plausible cause for this action.
Earlier, Google had also merged the business development teams at Google Play Music & YouTube Music to simplify the negotiation of deals with music labels and artists. Talking about the merger of these two teams, a Google spokesperson offer the following statement,
Music is very important to Google and we’re evaluating how to bring together our music offerings to deliver the best possible product for our users, music partners, and artists. Nothing will change for users today and we’ll provide plenty of notice before any changes are made.
This development doesn’t come as much surprise because Google was most likely aware of the clutter being caused due to the availability of two music streaming apps in the Play Store. There has also been confusion on the subscription front as well. On one hand, you could either purchase a Play Music subscription for $9.99 to gain unlimited streaming access. Or you had the option to pick a subscription for YouTube Red, which not only opened access to YouTube Music, Play Music and paid content but also removed annoying ads from the platform.
Currently, nothing is expected to change for the end-user accessing the two different music streaming applications. Both YouTube Music, as well as Play Music will continue to exist independently for the moment. The spokesperson hasn’t shed light on the future of the two apps but Google will likely push for the creation of a unified product experience.
This could most likely mark the end of YouTube Music’s reign, the platform which was launched towards the end of 2015. It enabled access to ad-free viewing and listening, audio-only mode and offline play for subscription users on YouTube. Now, you can definitely expect some functionalities of YouTube Music being folded into Play Music — the more popular platform among the two.