Video-sharing behemoth YouTube is plotting an entry into the music streaming arena with a new service to rival the likes of Spotify, Deezer and Rdio, according to reports on Tuesday.
Fortune claims to have heard from record industry sources, as well as an unnamed Google employee, who confirmed that YouTube wants to leverage its video dominance, where it has 800m monthly visitors, and branch out into music streaming.
According to the report, YouTube will follow Spotify's lead by offering free ad-funded music, while also answering content providers' demands for an ad-free monthly subscription offering.
The article doesn't make clear what form the streaming service would take; whether video would be part of the deal, or whether standalone desktop or mobile apps would also accompany a web-based offering.
This latest speculation follows weeks of reports claiming that Google has an own-branded music streaming service on that way.
However, according to Fortune, the YouTube offering will be a separate entity to what the search giant may be planning to unleash for its Android-based Google Play Store. Certain features would "overlap" though, the report said.
Pressed for a comment on the matter, a YouTube spokesperson gave little away, but did admit to exploring opportunities to create new revenue streams for its partners.
The spokesperson said: "While we don't comment on rumor or speculation, there are some content creators that think they would benefit from a subscription revenue stream in addition to ads, so we're looking at that."
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