TikTok, the popular social media platform, is reportedly testing an ad-free monthly subscription plan. With 1.7 billion monthly active users and projected ad revenue of over $18 billion this year, TikTok is exploring new ways to enhance the user experience. According to recent reports from Android Authority, the latest version of the TikTok app includes strings that suggest the platform is experimenting with an ad-free option. During the testing phase, this subscription plan is priced at $4.99 per month.
TikTok has confirmed to TechCrunch that it is indeed testing an ad-free tier, but only in a single English-speaking market outside of the United States. The company also clarified that these tests do not guarantee an imminent product launch in the US. While the subscription seems to focus on removing TikTok’s own ads, it may not address issues related to brand sponsorship disclosures by users.
Currently, TikTok generates most of its revenue from ads and recently integrated ads into its search results. It remains to be seen whether the ad-free subscription can replace the substantial ad revenue TikTok currently earns, estimated at $11 billion for 2022 alone. However, TikTok’s interest in exploring this ad-free alternative draws inspiration from platforms like YouTube and X, which already offer premium subscriptions without ads. While only a small percentage of users on these platforms opt for the ad-free option, the availability of choice is often appreciated.
As TikTok continues to evolve and adapt its monetization strategies, the possibility of an ad-free subscription plan adds a new layer of excitement for users. However, it’s important to note that these are still early stages of testing, and there is no guarantee of a widespread launch in the near future.