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YouTube Music 'Explore Section' Negates Need For Explore Tab

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A big thing with music streaming services (or streaming services in general) is letting people discover content. This is the point of the Explore Tab in YouTube Music. Well, the company just launched a new feature that will make that tab a bit useless. According to 9To5Google, there’s a new YouTube Music Explore section that does the same thing as the dedicated tab.

The point of the Explore tab is to have a unified section for you to discover content. It shows you new releases, charts, and a collection of moods and genres. Under that section, it shows you new albums that just launched along with the most popular new songs. Last, but not least, it shows you trending songs and videos.

Now, the YouTube Music Explore section makes the dedicated tab redundant

If you want to have access to all of that good stuff, well, there’s more than one way to access it. YouTube just added an update that places certain links at the bottom of your home screen. These links are New Releases, Charts, and Moods & Genres. Tapping on them will take you to the same places as with the dedicated tab. It seems weird that YouTube would do this.

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One possible reason is that people just aren’t using the Explore tab as much as YouTube wants. Maybe people access their music from the home screen more than the Explore tab (this, I can vouch for). This would make the move make more sense.

It’s also possible that YouTube could be getting rid of the tab eventually. Since the company basically boiled the tab down to a small section on the home screen, there’s no need for a dedicated tab.

If the tab is going away, what could replace it?

Now, there is no word on whether YouTube is replacing the Explore tab, but it might make sense. The company is shifting focus to another media type that could replace the tab: podcasts. YouTube has been putting a focus on podcasts since last year. Already, we know that it’s making a dedicated tab for podcasts in the future.

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Now, this might be a stretch, but it’s possible that, if the Explore tab gets taken away, it could be replaced with a podcast section. A dedicated podcast tab on the bottom would make getting podcasts quicker and easier than with the YouTube app proper. Since there’s a lot of competition with Spotify, it’s possible that YouTube would make a dedicated podcast section in YouTube Music. Also, Google Play Music had a dedicated podcasts section, so it makes sense that YouTube Music should do the same.