A student discount for YouTube Premium and YouTube Music Premium is now live. The new pricing brings YouTube Music Premium down to only $4.99 per month, while the wider YouTube Premium service is down to $6.99 per month. Students who sign up before January 31, 2019 can get YouTube Premium for only $5.99 per month. All of these deals will last for up to four years, so long as students are in school. If you're in the middle of a long degree program, such as a student who just got their Associate's and is going for their Master's, or a student who just got their Master's and is going for a Doctorate, you can get the full four years. After those four years, however, even if you're still a student, you'll have to pay full price. Your student status is validated through SheerID, and it only works for degree-granting, accredited schools. That means that students in tech school, some community colleges, work study programs, and other educational initiatives will not be able to qualify.
Background: For those not sure whether to pull the trigger, here's what your money will get you, and how much the subscriptions normally are. A YouTube Music Premium subscription normally runs $9.99, which means that you're saving $5 each month by going with the student subscription. That amount gets you ad-free music, download functionality to let you listen offline, and the ability to listen with your screen off and device locked. The YouTube Premium service expands on that for a normal price of $11.99 per month, and not only allows you to watch ad-free videos of all sorts, download them, and watch them with your screen off, but also nets you access to YouTube originals, including movies and shows that are subscriber-exclusive. It's worth noting that the discount does not apply to family plans, so parents heading back to school to better their kids' lives by bettering their career prospects will only be able to listen and watch ad-free on their own devices if they go for the deal.
Impact: To put it simply, this is going to boost YouTube's premium subscription numbers exponentially. There have been calls for student discounts for some time now, and it's finally happening, and with a pretty steep discount for both tiers of the service. The discounts only last for as long as students are actively in college or for four years, whichever happens first. Given that those who choose to sign up will probably get their money's worth by making YouTube their primary source of music while they're in school, they probably won't be bothered enough by the price hike at the end of the period to switch to another service. This translates to droves of broke college students becoming long-term YouTube Premium subscribers, and perhaps even hopping on family plans if and when they settle down and start families. It's a win-win situation wherein students who would otherwise not give YouTube Premium a second thought become subscribers, and the vast bulk of those stay with YouTube Premium after their schooling days are over, upping the user base and giving YouTube massive profits off the increased fees.