At its Nexus event in San Francisco last September, Google announced a new family plan for its Google Play Music service. The new service, in many ways similar to Apple Music’s family plan, will support up to 6 devices for $15, and will go live this week. As a bonus, the plan will also grant subscribers free access to the YouTube Red subscription service as well as YouTube’s recently-launched YouTube music app.
The presentation announcing the new plan was a bit awkward, but the anecdote rings true for families everywhere. When one music account is shared with others, there are bound to be problems. For instance, Spotify users with kids have no doubt been in the middle of enjoying their music when it is suddenly clipped off as one of their children hijacks the stream. And Spotfiy’s Discover feature is useless if more than one person listens on the account, as tastes in music are bound to be disparate between adults and their kids. No doubt, plenty of Google Play Music listeners have struggled with the same problem. But while Spotify users will have to continue to put up a bunch of cash or shut up about their woes ( at least for now), Google Play Music listeners now have a simple, inexpensive solution.
Like Apple Music’s family plan, Google Play Music’s new family solution not only allows multiple music streams at once, but enables individual profiles and playlists, and, therefore, individualized content discovery. Access to YouTube Red, which provides ad-free videos and access to exclusive YouTube content, and YouTube music, an all-music streaming service, is also bundled into the deal.
The plan comes for a flat fee of $15. Spotify, on the other hand, currently offers just 50 percent off each additional premium subscription added on top of a single, full-price subscription, though Spotify has indicated in the past that a family plan was in the works. Perhaps with new competition from Google, the world’s most popular streaming service will hasten a family plan rollout.
Article Update 12-9-2015 by Caleb Denison: Article updated to include service launch announcement and addition of YouTube Red and YouTube music to the $15 Google Play Music family plan.