New Delhi: Google-owned video streaming platform YouTube has introduced a new students plan for its premium offerings, YouTube Music Premium and YouTube Premium, in India. According to the new plan, all eligible college students will get discounted access to the platform’s library of music, global originals and movies, all free of advertisements. This will come at ₹59 for YouTube Music Premium and ₹79 for YouTube Premium, starting Wednesday.
The student plans are currently available to full-time students from accredited colleges or universities in India.
YouTube launched its Music and Premium offerings in India this March, in an effort to compete with international paid music streaming services such as Swedish company Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, as well as domestic music players like JioSaavn and Gaana in the country. All the premium services come with ad-free, background and offline access. YouTube Music had announced that it had hit three million downloads within a week of its launch in India.
The music industry in India is valued at ₹1,280 crore, where digital channels account for 65% of the country's overall music sales. The country has an estimated 481 million Internet users, with a 65% urban and 20% rural penetration. Its online audio market is likely to grow with increasing smartphone penetration and investments in music, besides its rich music culture. While music piracy, both physical and digital, is declining globally, it remains an obstacle in India, despite various laws and the music industry’s efforts to fight it.