There’s been some sort of symbiosis between YouTube, which hosts plenty of music videos (the “videos” part of that can be questionable at times), and Google Play Music, a straight-up streaming service. If you got a YouTube Red subscription, you got Play Music along with that and vice versa.
Of course, what you ultimately got was two like products with not much individual spice. And that’s where this move might come into play.
Several sources have told The Verge that the product teams working on YouTube Music (itself a “separate product” from other units like Red and Gaming) and Google Play Music will form into a single unit. While the status quo remains on the consumer end for now, this is being painted as a path to a convergence app.
Google has confirmed the move with this statement:
Music is very important to Google and we’re evaluating how to bring together our music offerings to deliver the best possible product for our users, music partners and artists. Nothing will change for users today and we’ll provide plenty of notice before any changes are made.
Spotify, Apple, Amazon, Pandora and the lot of others playing in the streaming music industry may look to brace themselves if Google can pull off the right mix of value and features together.