Last night, YouTube MENA announced the launch of YouTube Music into the region, along with YouTube Premium services.
YouTube Music will compete with the likes of Anghami and Spotify as a music-streaming provider, while YouTube Premium will offer ad-free streaming services.
Music has been the second-most streamed category on YouTube after entertainment in the region.
YouTube Music will include a smart-search option, where users can find songs using a few lyrics, as well as discover mixes, based on listening habits and likes.
YouTube Premium, will provide members four features:
1. Ad-free viewing
2. Background play, audio will continue to play even if a user exits the YouTube app
3. Offline access where users can download any video on YouTube to watch whenever they want
4. An included YouTube Music subscription which enables them to listen to music offline and without ads on the YouTube Music app.
Regional director of marketing at Google MENA, Tarek Abdalla said: “For over a decade, millions of people in the Arab world have come to YouTube to watch, learn and listen. Music is the second most popular category on YouTube and it continues to grow. We’re excited to launch YouTube Music which will give our users access to the massive YouTube music catalogue, helping them find the music they love, from new releases to iconic classics and from viral covers to live performances.
“We’re also excited to launch YouTube Premium, an ad-free subscription service that allows our users to watch all videos on YouTube without ads including offline viewing, background play and other amazing features," he finished.
YouTube Music subscriptions start at Dhs19.99 and YouTube Premium at Dhs23.99. Both services will roll out to all users in the coming weeks, starting September 10.