According to The Wall Street Journal, YouTube is developing a system that would let users subscribe to streaming services using the YouTube app. The so-called “channel shop” might debut as soon as this autumn. The Journal’s article simply mentioned that YouTube has been in contact with a number of entertainment firms, without specifying which services would be offered in the shop.
It has been planned for a long time and makes perfect sense for YouTube to have a channel store: Early in 2020, The Information covered a similar scheme. The business has been teasing this more recently: Christian Oestlien, vice president of product management at YouTube, recently told The Verge, “I believe whether content is given in a bundle or whether over time we explore alternative methods of delivering it, I think YouTube can be a terrific partner there.” “We’ve never seen the world as these stark contrasts between ourselves and our partner services… we believe everyone can live in harmony with one another.”
Perhaps the most well-liked concept right now in the streaming industry is this one. Tech businesses are thinking that they are better suited managing everything but the shows and movies, particularly those who have tried to develop their own original content and seen how difficult (and costly!) it is to do so. Your carrier may position itself as a beneficial marketing partner and infrastructure supplier for subscriptions since you already have an account with Verizon or AT&T and pay them a fee each month. Similar to the traditional cable bundle, but with internet access. The benefit is the same for game retailers and app store providers: a tiny percentage of every purchase.
This is a point that is frequently and persuasively made by Apple, Amazon, and a number of others. According to the Journal, HBO Max obtained 4.5 million customers via Amazon Channels. After a temporary break from that collaboration, HBO Max is allegedly intending to resume. According to reports, Walmart is considering joining the fray.
However, of all the channel store partners, YouTube may have the strongest argument. With a monthly viewership of over two billion, a large portion of them already have a YouTube account and credit card registered there. It’s an easy upsell to get them enrolled to the service since they already have the app downloaded and may even be viewing Peacock or HBO episodes one clip at a time.
Even a portion of this platform is already built out on YouTube. You can already subscribe to HBO Max, Starz, Showtime, and other channels and services from within the YouTube TV interface, making it something similar to a channel shop. On YouTube, you may also directly buy and rent movies in addition to watching certain content for nothing. 50 free TV channels are reportedly coming to the Google TV platform, according to recent code found in the app.
This also has the impression of being YouTube’s last admission that it cannot compete directly with Netflix and HBO. The business has long sought methods to create and provide more premium content, including a few unsuccessful attempts to create original TV-style material. Sadly missed, YouTube Originals YouTube is already the go-to source for TV program and movie snippets and highlights, but it hasn’t been successful in bringing high-end Hollywood material to the site.
The relationship between YouTube and Hollywood has improved over the years, but many entertainment businesses still see it as both a partner and a necessary evil. In order for this to succeed, YouTube will need to persuade streaming services that it won’t pose a long-term danger to their industry. Although Apple and Amazon provide rival services, nobody of them poses the grave danger or paradigm-shifting change that YouTube does to the TV and movie industries. YouTube’s ability to function as the channel shop it aspires to be will largely depend on how the Peacocks and Paramount Pluses of the world balance the importance of its sizable audience against the competitive attraction of its content.
It’s the app store concept all over again, and there is a lot of money to be made, therefore everyone will want to be the channel store in the future. But if YouTube is successful, it may be even more. A YouTube app with all of your purchased and rented content, streaming content, favorite creators, and the search engine powering it all? Without a doubt, that would be the most effective entertainment software.