YouTube launches its own TV service

Online video giant YouTube is taking on traditional cable TV companies with its $35-a-month subscription service

YouTube's TV service will compete directly with traditional cable TV, but at a lower price-point

After months of speculation, YouTube has finally unveiled YouTube TV, its live television service that will cost subscribers $35 a month. The package will carry more than 40 channels, including major US broadcast networks such as ABC, Fox, NBC and ESPN.

The service, which is due to launch this spring in a new, standalone app, will allow users to watch live TV from any portable device, and can be streamed to television sets using Google Chromecast. The app is compatible with both Android and iOS platforms, offering on-the-go access from a range of mobile and tablet devices. At $35 a month, the package is around half the price of a traditional cable subscription, offering a competitive rate for younger users who may not wish to pay for a big bundle.

The company has created a cloud DVR service as part of the YouTube TV package, which will allow users to record as much live TV as they desire

“It’s live TV designed for the YouTube generation – those who want to watch what they want, when they want, how they want, without commitments”, the company wrote in a blog post confirming the launch.

Responding to consumer demands, the video site has created a cloud DVR service as part of the YouTube TV package, which will allow users to record as much live TV as they desire, without ever running out of storage. Due to the cloud computing feature, these hours of recorded footage will be stored remotely, meaning that they won’t eat into precious memory or data on users’ phones and tablets.

“Consumers have made it clear that they want live TV without all the hassle”, the firm explained. “They tell us they want TV to be more like YouTube.”

While the service will be available on TV through Chromecast, the package is aimed at mobile-loving younger audiences, who tend not to watch TV in a traditional setting. The service hopes to appeal to this tech-savvy generation by bringing television content to their preferred devices, namely mobiles and tablets.

With Facebook having recently launched a standalone video app, the online streaming world is becoming an increasingly crowded market. As Netflix has proven with its hugely popular collection of exclusive series and films, original content is the key to success in this competitive field. With this in mind, YouTube has been focusing on promoting its own original shows of late, with the creation of its own paid subscription service, Youtube Red, in 2015. The service, which features films and shows starring popular YouTubers, will be available to all new YouTube TV subscribers.

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