YouTube Puts End to Streamus Music Streaming App

streamus Music App Stopping
Courtesy of Streamus

YouTube has pulled the plug on a Chrome extension that used the site’s videos for a free, Spotify-like music streaming service.

Streamus, which launched in 2013, enabled free on-demand streaming of songs through Google’s Chrome browser. The Chrome extension tapped into YouTube’s catalog to power its streaming, but didn’t actually display any of the videos. Instead, it just used the audio, making it possible to stream songs in the background while doing other things online.

That concept — and the fact that Streamus was free and didn’t come with any ads — proved popular: The Chrome extension reportedly had 300,000 users.

However, it looks like YouTube wasn’t that happy about Streamus using its music in this way: The Google-owned video service apparently tried to work with the developer of Streamus for a few months to get him to change his app, according to a the Next Web report, but eventually just turned off access to its catalog a few days ago.

A YouTube spokesperson sent Variety the following statement when asked about the end of Streamus:

“We encourage people to leverage the power of our open API to embed YouTube videos in creative and innovative ways that comply with our terms of service.”

Streamus didn’t do that because it separated the audio from the video, something that’s expressively prohibited in YouTube’s terms of service. The Streamus app has since been removed from the Chrome Web Store, but there is still an open source version available.

The shut-down of Streamus comes at a time when YouTube is looking to double down on music streaming itself. The video site is currently running an invite-only beta test of its own Spotify competitor, dubbed YouTube Music Key.

One of Music Key’s features: Background playback, which essentially keeps the music playing without the video. Music Key will cost $10 a month when it becomes more widely available at some point later this year.

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    1. Sun-Shiney says:

      There’s more to the story than reported here. No ads –> because of Youtube’s code. Has nothing to do with Streamus code. Video? He offered three ways of showing video. The first two were wihin the player. The third offer was to make it sticky alongside the bottom of the desktop taskbar, providing more views than they themselves provide. They vetoed all three.

      While they go after a mosquito, they fail to file a suit for interruption of commerce against AdBlocker, which has cost them billions of dollars a year, including payments to artists.

      And..meanwhile…one can go to Youtube and listen to music all day, with video “separated.” Miimize the tab. Millions already do it.

      Not long ago, Google increased Streamus permissions and approved it.

      The developer was offered a job inside Google/YouTube. He turned it down. That’s when things soured.

      Gorrilla and David. It’s really turned me off to these two companies. And 300,000 users have the ability to share with 10 others — that’s a lot of bad buzz from a mosquito bite.

      And to think that in an earlier interview, the developer stated that if there was demand for the service, he would begin looking for ways to monetize that were not ads/subscriptions as the world wants another way. Millenials behave differently.

      This was plain stupid.

      But apparently they are so brilliant they don’t see the stupidity.

      What he needs is an investor to bring in his own music catalog, tap his development and marketing skills, and throw rocks at this goliath that is behaving in a very old fashioned way.

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