As part of my Discord Nitro subscription, I not only got a few months of the Xbox Game Pass for “free” but also one month of YouTube Premium… and that’s nice because I never would have tried it out if it weren’t for this. Factually, there’s this offer to try it out for a month for relatively cheap but as always, you end up forgetting that you have it and it’s annoying and then you end up paying money for it. I cancelled it already at this point. Why? You’ll see here.
YouTube Premium is a subscription service on YouTube that has been around for a while. For 11.99€ a month, you can watch videos ad-free, play YouTube videos in the background, listen to YouTube Music, and you can watch videos offline. These benefits barely make a difference and while ads can get quite annoying, especially when they’re unskippable or when they don’t interest you… Adblock helps get rid of those on PC and on phone, it doesn’t matter too much.
Most of these perks are quite relevant on your phone but not at all on PC. Again, AdBlock exists… and you can watch videos in the background on your PC even without the service. YouTube Music is practically irrelevant while Spotify is still around (don’t buy that, Google!) unless, of course, you’re not using Spotify. Downloading YouTube videos to watch them offline is cool… but incredibly niche. I don’t know if I’d ever use that… I guess it could be nice if you don’t have enough mobile data but I rarely watch YouTube videos on the go, so it’s just kind of weird? Meanwhile, the background play feature is kinda neat on mobile as I can quickly switch to WhatsApp or Discord without having to stop watching… but again, it’s just a niche feature and honestly, it’s quite bothersome, to say the least, as I can’t just turn off my phone and lay it down. I need to first pause the video before turning it off. It’s lowkey annoying even.
On another note, I don’t like the model overall. On Twitch, you can subscribe to people and get ad-free viewing at a third to half of YouTube premium’s price. Yes, you only get ad-free viewing on this one channel that you subscribed to, but it’s helping the streamer in question as well, supporting them financially. On YouTube, I turn off AdBlock when I watch certain channels. Why? Well, because I like what they do. I don’t know if they still get money when I use premium. I don’t know how much money they get from Premium if they do get paid at all. Factually, most ads don’t bother me on YouTube as you can skip most of them after 5 seconds, so paying ten bucks for that is a bit overpriced, in my opinion.
Overall, I think YouTube premium is somewhat overpriced and underwhelming. Twitch Turbo does exactly the same thing, essentially, at a lower cost, but I don’t use that either so whatever. I don’t think I’ll use YouTube Premium after the trial runs out and I did cancel already as it’s borderline useless. I guess if you don’t care about the revenue that creators get or if you use YouTube a lot on your phone, YouTube Premium might be worth it – but it’s not for me. I don’t like it all that much. Oh well.