The latest update for YouTube Music on Android is out soon and there’s new information that suggests it will someday replace Google Play Music.
The team over at 9to5Google tore down version 2.65 of the app and discovered that there are a few lines of code that mention deleting sideloaded audio from your YouTube Music library.
In a previous teardown, 9to5Google found that Google was working on adding the ability to sideload music into YouTube Music. Now that it’s working on being able to remove them, it seems like the feature is nearing completion.
Sideloading, in the context of a music app, is a feature that allows users to add music they own to an app. For instance, it could be music they bought and downloaded through a service like Bandcamp or an album they ripped off a CD.
Alongside the lines of code related to sideloading, 9to5Google found a set of new icons with the keyword “systeminstalled.”
This suggests that Google’s long-term play is to replace Play Music as Android’s default audio app. Presumably, Android phones will ship with Youtube Music as their default music player.
It also appears that Google is in the process of changing the ‘Offline Mixtape’ feature and renaming it ‘Smart Downloads.’
The Offline Mixtape feature downloads trending tracks that the app’s algorithm thinks users will like, so they can listen to those tracks offline.
This teardown gives us a lot to think about as Google seemingly inches closer to replacing Play Music with YouTube Music.
Currently, both apps stream music in similar ways, but Google Play Music allows sideloaded music and also supports podcasts. In contrast, YouTube Music gives its subscribers access to tons of music videos and doesn’t feature podcast playback.