Probably Coming Soon: Paid, Ad-Free Subscriptions on YouTube

Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox

Stay informed and join our daily newsletter now!
Will be used in accordance with our Privacy Policy
Guest Writer
2 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

It looks like a paid, ad-free subscription option for YouTube users will soon be a reality.

Yesterday, YouTube's CEO Susan Wojcicki took the stage at the Code Mobile conference in Half Moon Bay, Calif. While she dropped some interesting figures – half of the platforms views currently come via mobile devices, and the site continues to grow 50 percent a year in terms of watch time – her biggest reveal was that YouTube is exploring a push into subscription services.

"YouTube right now is ad-supported, which is great because it has enabled us to scale to a billion users; but there’s going to be a point where people don’t want to see the ads,” Wojcicki said, according to Recode.

It sounds as if YouTube's subscription model will be a variation on Hulu's, except in lieu of paying for premium content on top of ad-supported content that's available for free, users will pay to opt-out of viewing ads on the platform. There are already many apps that support this model, Wojcicki said onstage. In the same vein, "we’re thinking about how to give users options."

Related: How to Appropriately Promote Yourself on YouTube

Perhaps the most surprising thing about this move is that it's taken YouTube so long. While the company has flirted with subscriptions before – in the spring of 2013 it debuted an option that allowed select channel owners to charge users to watch their videos – this is the first rumbling of a paid-subscription option that will allow users to avoid ads on the platform. 

YouTube's subscriptions will likely focus on specific content verticals, such as news or music, according to The Wall Street Journal. While YouTube's central ad-supported business model will remain intact, users would have the option of paying for subscriptions. For example, once YouTube's long awaited streaming service finally drops, users could either continue to listen to music with ads on the platform, or pay for an ad-free streaming experience.

"If you look at media over time most of them have both ads and subscriptions," Wojcicki said.  

Related: YouTube to Open Free Production Facility for NYC-Based Creators

More from Entrepreneur

Get heaping discounts to books you love delivered straight to your inbox. We’ll feature a different book each week and share exclusive deals you won’t find anywhere else.
Jumpstart Your Business. Entrepreneur Insider is your all-access pass to the skills, experts, and network you need to get your business off the ground—or take it to the next level.
Are you paying too much for business insurance? Do you have critical gaps in your coverage? Trust Entrepreneur to help you find out.

Latest on Entrepreneur

Entrepreneur Media, Inc. values your privacy. In order to understand how people use our site generally, and to create more valuable experiences for you, we may collect data about your use of this site (both directly and through our partners). By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to the use of that data. For more information on our data policies, please visit our Privacy Policy.