YouTube Is Asking People To Pay For Certain Types Of Videos

YouTube is starting to ask certain users to pay for videos streamed in 4K.

By Tiffany Velasquez | Published

YouTube has been free since it was founded in 2005. YouTube is currently free (outside of their premium subscription), except for watching a few ads throughout your video browsing. This might be changing though as YouTube is pushing more memberships and even making 4K resolution videos only available to stream to its YouTube premium members. 

Since it was first launched, YouTube has always been free to users, as long as they watch an ad, even 4K. Some users have recently brought to light that they were unable to stream the high-quality, 4K videos. The users who were experiencing the inability to watch in 4K took to other social media platforms to question what was happening.

After questions were raised regarding why 4K was not an option, the YouTube support team reached out via Twitter (in a now-deleted Tweet). They explained that some users were being used in part of an experiment. YouTube was testing the waters to determine and better understand preferences between premium and non-premium users.

This is common practice for YouTube. They often make adjustments to their platform to gauge usage and gather other information. The thought process behind this is ultimately to make the experience better for all users.

While there is no official word regarding what will happen with 4K streaming, there is certainly speculation. If 4k was only available to Premium users, it would certainly drive more people towards a subscription purchase. Users worldwide will certainly continue to watch videos streamed from YouTube, as they have for nearly 20 years, regardless if they are available to watch in 4K or not. 

4K resolution refers to the quality of which the video is streamed. In a 4K video there are about 4,000 pixels displayed across a users screen. While YouTube supports an even higher quality resolution, 4K resolution is generally the highest streaming quality that YouTube offers for its videos. 

YouTube is an online social media platform based in the United States. It was made to share videos online between users and friends. After Google, it is the most visited site worldwide.

The company has over 2.5 billion users who visit the website monthly. Most of the content on YouTube is created by individuals who are often referred to as, YouTubers, along with sponsors of the YouTubers. The content is then available to anyone, worldwide, with internet access. 

The video streaming platform generates income from a few different sources. Paid advertising is one of the main sources of income with an annual income of around $28 billion. Additionally, YouTube offers a subscription service called YouTube Premium for users to watch videos without the interruption of ads. 

YouTube Premium memberships are currently available for around $12 a month with a one-month free trial. The subscription includes features like ad-free listening, background listening, and more. They also offer annual, family, and student plans.

These new experiments allow developers insight into just how users navigate through YouTube. It generates information on what features are being used, what users notice, and ultimately, what matters most to the users. Some people might not notice the small changes while others immediately notice.