It has been nearly two years since the launch of YouTube Red, or as I like to say: The subscription that lets you actually watch YouTube. Prior to that, it was called YouTube Music Key and only served music videos and enabled background and offline playback. Now it looks like there might be a new subscription tier called YouTube Plus coming soon.
Disclaimer: Teardowns are based on evidence found inside of apks (Android’s application package) and are necessarily speculative and usually based on incomplete information. It’s possible that the guesses made here are totally and completely wrong. Even when predictions are correct, there is always a chance that plans could change or may be canceled entirely. Much like rumors, nothing is certain until it’s officially announced and released.
The features discussed below are probably not live yet, or may only be live for a small percentage of users. Unless stated otherwise, don’t expect to see these features if you install the latest version.
A teardown of the YouTube v12.37 apk turned up two new lines of text representing subscription options. Naturally, one line represents YouTube Red, but it’s the one that names YouTube Plus that is of interest. There are currently no references to Plus or any other subscription tiers in YouTube’s online documentation.
YouTube PlusYouTube Red
On a possibly related note, a Chrome extension named YouTube Plus was pulled from the Webstore back in April. It was later reinstated after the developer changed the name to Particle for YouTube. An explanation was later given that the extensions name violated the branding guidelines of the Webstore – the Google Play Store has a similar policy regarding product names. It’s possible this was a coincidence, but my suspicion is that YouTube became aware of the conflict after coming up with the Plus name, then reported it to