You had to have expected this, right? With YouTube
investing millions of dollars to equip producers with the tools necessary to create actual channels on the service that people would bother to subscribe to, Google was simply laying the foundation for YouTube to become something greater than a repository for weird cat videos and low-quality phone uploads. Instead, it wants to hop on the bandwagon
that Amazon and Netflix are riding, where online natives are creating
top-notch content for mass consumption.
Reports are suggesting that Google is planning a video subscription service for YouTube, with around 50 paid channels to be announced this week. Reportedly, the company is: "looking into creating a subscription platform that could bring even more great content to YouTube for our users to enjoy and provide our creators with another vehicle to generate revenue from their content, beyond the rental and ad-supported models we offer."
It's likely that premium content would be offered here -- stuff that could easily air on Netflix, Hulu or Amazon. Viewers would be charged around $1.99 per month, which is far lower than rivals, and the vast majority of stuff on YouTube would remain free. Mostly, this subscription model would likely allow it to funnel original conten to viewers who care to pay for such things, without changing the fabric of what makes the site special. Something tells us they'll have a hit on their hands.