At the Code/Mobile conference, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki made headlines by noting that YouTube may build a subscription-based, ad-free service for its users. Not to be outdone, Vimeo CEO Kerry Trainor has now said his site plans to roll out its own subscription service, which could arrive next year.
It’s not clear what sort of service Trainor is referring to, but it won’t be exactly like YouTube’s, since there are no ads on Vimeo to begin with. Vimeo also already offers Vimeo Plus, a subscription service that provides an expanded toolkit for video creators.
Instead of focusing on a cleaner user experience, Vimeo’s subscription service seems as if it will be based around content. Vimeo already offers pay-to-view content through its Vimeo On Demand service, which has drawn interest from filmmakers and online video creators who are interested in non-ad based revenue streams. Vimeo On Demand is currently an “a la carte” service, so a future subscription-based model could potentially function like Netflix or Amazon by giving customers access to a number of different videos they would otherwise have to pay for individually.
Trainor said Vimeo’s On Demand push has been a success. “The thing that tells us is that users are really excited and willing to pay for a whole world of content that’s just not making it to them via existing pay channels,” he told Recode.
Trainor, similarly to Wojcicki, didn’t offer any specific details, but he did say Vimeo could start offering subscriptions next year. We’re working on it,” he said. “The shovels are in the ground.”