Nairobi, Kenya | NOW THEN DIGITAL — TikTok is exploring the possibility of introducing a subscription model that offers an ad-free experience for users. This move follows other media platforms, such as X (formerly Twitter), that have already implemented subscription-based models.
According to TechCrunch, TikTok has confirmed this experiment, but it’s currently being tested in a single English-speaking market outside the US. The platform clarified that this is a small-scale test and does not guarantee an immediate product launch.
This news follows a report by Android Authority that discovered code indicating TikTok’s intention to offer a monthly ad-free subscription, priced at $4.99 during the testing phase in the US. However, TikTok clarified that this testing is limited to a specific market outside the US.
It’s important to note that this subscription service seems to apply solely to ads served directly by TikTok and does not cover influencer marketing campaigns or one-off endorsements.
If successful, this testing could mark a significant shift from TikTok’s usual ad-driven revenue model. TikTok has traditionally relied on revenue generated from ads, incorporating revenue-sharing mechanisms for content creators and a direct Live Subscription feature for supporting creators.
The specifics of how TikTok plans to differentiate this subscription offering beyond an ad-free experience remain unclear. This testing comes after TikTok’s recent multi-year licensing deal with Warner Music Group, which focused on exploring additional and alternative economic models. While details about these models are undisclosed, there’s speculation it may relate to TikTok Music, a new music subscription app launched in Indonesia and Brazil.
In conclusion, this test could open the door for a broader range of subscription services within TikTok, potentially extending to TikTok Music or other offerings. However, it’s important to await further developments and official announcements from TikTok regarding this subscription model.