YouTube rolls out music streaming service in MENA

YouTube has introduced its music streaming services in the Middle East and North Africa market.

The YouTube music streaming services will firstly be accessible in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, Lebanon and Oman. The company is providing two services YouTube Music offers a music streaming application from 5.44 USD (Dh19.99) per month and YouTube Premium is an ad-free streaming from 6.53 USD (Dh23.99) per month. Both services will be accessible on both Android and iOS operating systems.

The Regional Director of Marketing of Google MENA, Tarek Abdalla, said, “For over a decade, millions of people in the Arab world have come to YouTube to watch, learn and listen. Music is the second most popular category on YouTube [in the region] and it continues to grow.”

YouTube Music and YouTube Premium are now available in 70 countries globally.

YouTube is providing the services for a free introductory period of three months to users in Saudi Arabia, and one month in the rest of the region. Saudi Arabia is the biggest user of YouTube per capita globally, and the Mena region is among the top five globally for time spent watching YouTube.

The Director of Product Management for music products at YouTube, T Jay Fowler, commented, “Before launching this service, we have taken utmost care of local flavor, culture and preferences of consumers from this part of the world. There will be a huge library to cater to the needs of all age groups. People will enjoy the music they love whether it’s through official releases or iconic music videos, bringing artists closer to their fans.”

Regional music labels have agreed that the entry of YouTube into the regional music streaming industry will be advantageous and will promote local talent.

Ahmed Nureni, the Vice President of Business Development at Qanawat which is one of the largest digital music companies in the region, declared, “With YouTube Music, we believe Arabic music will be more global, more engaging and have more exposure with all users worldwide. YouTube has played a key role in our growth and we believe this service will offer a great new experience for avid music listeners.”