Soon, YouTube's paid original content, which includes a bunch of TV shows and movie reboots, will be available for free.
A spokesperson from the video-sharing platform confirmed the plans of making YouTube Originals free.
The strategy is said to be executed starting next year, which would lead to the introduction of ads in the content.
Here's more on the change.
YouTube to scale back on original, scripted content
YouTube Originals are accessible as part of a service called YouTube Premium, priced at $12 a month.
However, sources familiar with the matter told Hollywood Reporter that the company plans to tone down its original efforts, starting 2020 as part of a budget reduction.
It isn't dropping originals entirely, but won't be spending hundreds of millions of dollars on them, as per sources.
As part of this, Originals will be free, ad-supported
As part of this strategic shift, YouTube will be making its original shows and movies free for 2 billion YouTube users, but will add the element of ads.
"Through experimentation, we've also learned that we can make a lot of the projects work incredibly well when we make them available free to users," YouTube chief business officer Robert Kyncl said.
Ad-based model will also expand YouTube Original's audience
"This next phase of our originals strategy will expand the audience of our YouTube Original creators, and provide advertisers with incredible content that reaches the YouTube generation," a spokesperson from the company said on the shift to an ad-based model.
So, how YouTube would separate regular from paying customers
YouTube's strategic shift might ultimately mean free content for both paying and non-paying subscribers.
However, the company might bring some elements to draw a line between the two.
For instance, it could provide extended cuts to paying customers or roll-out all episodes at once for them, like Netflix or Amazon.
Meanwhile, for non-paying customers, it could follow a weekly release pattern with ads.
In the near future, Originals will remain paid
Having said that, it is important to note that all upcoming Originals (including Karate Kid reboot Cobra Kai and the Doug Liman-produced Impulse) will remain behind a paywall at least in the near future or until when YouTube makes the free-viewing move official.