On a free YouTube account, it’s impossible not to be interrupted 27 times by the same Eugene Levy car ad. For those of us who would rather endure that than pay $11.99 per month for YouTube Premium to get rid of ads, YouTube is testing an interesting alternative in parts of Europe.
First spotted on ResetEra and announced by The Verge, there’s a new, cheaper edition of Premium available: YouTube Premium Lite that select users in nations like Finland, Norway, and Luxembourg can test out. Premium’s price in Europe is nearly halved, from €11.99 to €6.99, and subscribers are no longer subjected to advertising. There is only one problem: it doesn’t do anything else.
Premium subscribers get ad-free viewing, offline downloads, YouTube Music perks, and the ability to play a YouTube video in the background while another app is open. According to The Verge, Premium Lite eliminates almost all of Premium’s perks while only reducing the price by 40 percent. This service might not be a particularly good value if it comes to the U.S. at the same price drop.
Considering it’s still in limited regional testing, that’s a big “if.” Premium Lite might never come out at all, or it might come out with extra features or at a cheaper price. The fact that YouTube is looking for ways to free us from the clutches of awful commercials is at least encouraging.