Susan Wojcicki, top banana at YouTube, took the stage at Fortune’s Brainstorm Tech conference just a few minutes ago to talk about the future of Google’s video unit and answer some questions about competitors, including Facebook and Twitter.
As for what to expect, Wojcicki said that 50 percent of YouTube’s views are now coming from mobile devices, and that as a result, the company’s top three priorites are “mobile, mobile, mobile.”
She also suggested that an acquisition could be in YouTube’s future if the right company crosses YouTube’s path. “If there’s a company that lets us our [fulfill our] strategy faster, then yes, anything that helps us move faster” is game, she told interviewer Adam Lashinsky.
Wojcicki also said to expect a public rollout later this year of Music Key, a music service that YouTube launched in beta late last year and whose key features include enabling users to listen “ad free,” to use the service offline, and to use it in the background (i.e, while browsing through their other apps).
She wasn’t asked, and didn’t volunteer, whether the service would cost $10 a month as was originally the plan. That’s the same price, of course, that numerous other streaming music services charge customers who aren’t willing to sit through ads. She did stress that Music Key differentiates itself in numerous ways, including via the related music videos it can share with users, not to mention all the user-generated clips of people who’ve covered songs. “Our corpus is very different,” she offered.
Wojcicki declined to provide hard numbers about YouTube’s growth, despite outsiders’ longstanding fascination with the service. For example, asked about the accuracy of reported numbers that YouTube saw $4 billion in profit in 2014 but zero profits, Wojcicki said she wished she could talk about YouTube’s financials as it would “make my life easier.” She then offered only that Youtube is seeing “really good growth of our partner revenue.”
Not last, Wojcicki was asked if YouTube “gets exclusivity with [its many video] stars, and do you want it?” (YouTube has offered its “creators” exclusive multi-year agreements in the past.) She didn’t answer the first part of the question directly, but said that while exclusive agreements with its top talent would be nice, “I don’t think it’s necessary. YouTube is their home. It’s where they were born.”
Their fans, she said, expect to see them there, she added.