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YouTube to rival Netflix and LoveFilm with paid-for ‘premium’ content

Although YouTube is more famed for its huge collections of music videos and hilarious clips, the Google-owned video sharing site could be set to offer subscriptions to rival Netflix and LoveFilm.

Advertising site Adage reckons YouTube is currently in talks to offer videos and channels that will be paid for by the user in order to generate more revenue and expand the service. The site says that producers are currently working with YouTube to come up with a service, although we don’t know when it could launch.

The majority of YouTube is entirely free, although channel owners can of course generate revenue from their uploaded videos through advertising. YouTube also offers digital movie rentals which allow the user a LoveFilm-style short period in which to start and finish watching a digital copy.

Adage quotes unnamed sources who say that YouTube users will be able to pay between $1 and $5 per month for a subscription, giving them access to ‘Premium’ video channels. Those who own the content that will be on these pay-for channels will reportedly get a 45% cut of the profits generated.

If the report turns out to be true, YouTube could offer users the chance to pay for exclusive or unique content in the future. It’s not clear exactly what type of content will be offered yet, but we would imagine TV shows and original content to be likely candidates.

A Google spokesperson recently touched on the subject of subscriptions when talking to the site, seemingly confirming the rumours;

“We have long maintained that different content requires different types of payment models.”

“The important thing is that, regardless of the model, our creators succeed on the platform. There are a lot of our content creators that think they would benefit from subscriptions, so we’re looking at that.”

Would you pay to watch content on YouTube? If so, what would you like to see in return for your money?