YouTube launches subscription service with 53 channels

first_imgIt’s been teased, hinted, and all but demanded for over a year now. Subscription-based content has come to YouTube in a big way, and it looks great.Over the last year, YouTube has seen a significant increase in high quality content. From channels like “Geek and Sundry” with Wil Wheaton and Felicia Day to “H+ The Digital Series” releasing an entire season exclusively to YouTube, it’s been interesting to see this influx of premium content. At the same time, services like HBO are constantly under pressure to release a version of their service that doesn’t include paying a cable provider. So far HBO hasn’t budged, but Google has stepped in and offered a service that makes it easy for quality content producers to give their users something to subscribe to.53 pilot channels have opened up on YouTube, each with the ability to subscribe for a monthly or yearly price depending on what kind of content you want. Whether it’s the all British all the time “AcornTV” or the “Big Think Mentor” series, or even kids content with “Franklin” there’s a ton of options available. None of the subscriptions are particularly expensive, starting at $0.99 per month and working their way up to as much as $4.99.Big Think Mentor and others offer a $19.99 per year subscription as well, though not every channel has made this feature available. Once you make the purchase, the channel is added to your existing subscriptions list as though it were just another channel.In the case of Big Think Mentor, the channel is available entirely ad free for your subscription. Signing up offers you a 14 day free trial, after which you’ll be charged for the subscription that you have agreed to when you select the channel. Purchases are made through Google Wallet, and the videos are immediately available on your YouTube account. The videos can be watched on your smartphone and tablet as well as your computer, and it all still looks and feels like YouTube. It doesn’t seem like Google has done anything new or different to stop these videos from being downloaded through existing third party YouTube downloader services as a result, but an ad-free YouTube is a breath of fresh air.last_img read more