Read original story on: The Verge
YouTube has reportedly struck a deal with rights agency Merlin, gaining music licenses from the thousands of independent record labels. Coming just two weeks after CEO Susan Wojcicki publicly confirmed that a subscription-based, ad-free music service was on the way, this new development definitely sets the stage for its presumably imminent launch. Whether the big mainstream record label would be on board remains to be seen, but given YouTube’s long-time partnership with Vevo, it shouldn’t be too much of a problem.
Update: YouTube has just officially unveiled a subscription-based music service. Named YouTube Music Key, an ad-free music and music videos starting at $7.99 a month. It also comes with access to all the music in Google Play.