The newly redesigned and talked about YouTube Music Key has been in the making for some time. It was first rumored months ago and back in August more details begun to come through, like the name of the service and some of the rumored features. It was expected that the service would not launch for another couple of weeks and then Google surprised everyone by launching the YouTube Music Key last week. That said, it was not a proper launch, but instead the release of a beta version which required users to sign-up and take part in. In terms of the service, Google plan to charge a monthly amount (starting for early adopters) of $7.99 and moving up to (the expected normal) $9.99. Similar to what we saw with Google Play All Access. For that figure, you get unlimited video streaming (with no ads) plus the really sweet ability to view videos offline and music streaming the background.
In spite of the service being launched last week, it was only the beta sign-up that was made available. In terms of the service, it was only as early as yesterday that we began to hear users report that the service was starting to reach users. As an extension of this, we are now hearing reports that All Access users are starting to receive the ability to play videos offline as well as the background streaming feature. Now, if you are an All Access user and shouting at the screen that you don’t have the feature, then you are not alone. The early reports are suggesting only some users are getting the service. In fact, it seems to be a rather random roll-out with some All Access users reporting in the US, UK and Finland while others in the same areas reporting they don’t have it. So it seems to be a bit of luck of the draw.
Anyway, if you are an All Access user and want to see if you have the service then the test is rather simple. This is not determined by an update and instead is being added server side by Google. Simply open your YouTube app. Immediately, you should be presented by a pop-up message letting you know that you have the new features. As a reminder, this means that you will have access to background music streaming which basically means you can swap apps and still have YouTube playing in the background. You will also have the very neat offline playback mode which as the name suggests will allow you to watch content when you don’t have an internet connection. If you are one of the lucky ones then let us know what you think of the new features.