YouTube Premium prices are rising and I’m not happy
It's now $16.99 if you want to skip advertisements.
It's the email you never want: hello, we're about to charge you more.
That's what I got from YouTube today.
"To continue delivering great service and features, we are increasing the Premium plan price to $16.99/month," it reads.
That's a whopping 41% increase on the $11.99 I'm paying now for YouTube Premium, which lets you watch ad-free and download videos for offline viewing.
Alas, streaming services putting prices up is an all-too-familiar pattern, as providers try to become profitable in a very crowded market.
In the last few weeks, Apple TV has raised prices for new subscribers, and Amazon Prime has announced plans to introduce ads onto its basic service early next year. Don't want ads? That's an additional cost.
This year, we've also seen Netflix drop its basic plan, along with price rises from Paramount Plus, Amazon Prime and Binge. Disney+ last lifted its prices in November 2022, which means an annual hike may be on the way soon.
Streaming is popular - and expensive.
69% of Australians subscribe to at least 1 streaming service, and the average Australian spends $45 a month on streaming, Finder statistics show.
(As a YouTube Premium subscriber, I'm an outlier - just 7% of us pay for that.)
You can cut your streaming costs by taking maximum advantage of free trials.
So the big question: will I end up paying more for YouTube Premium? Probably. I watch a lot of YouTube, and it's a much more pleasant experience without ads.
Also, the download option is really useful for when I'm on the road.
YouTube's owner Google is also offering me a mild sop.
The price rise won't actually kick in on my account until April 2024, and, as the email reminds me, "as a long-standing and valued member, you are currently paying a lower rate for Premium than the rate available to new subscribers". (The monthly charge for new subscribers until recently was $14.99.)
So for now I'll put up with it. But it might be time to pause Netflix - I genuinely haven't watched that at all in the last month.
- YouTube Premium price rise email 2 November 2023
- Internet TV streaming statistics 2023