YouTube withdraws support from Amazon's FireTV and Echo Show

Krales  The Verge

Krales The Verge

According to a Google spokesperson who shared a statement with CNET, Google has been "trying to reach agreement with Amazon to give consumers access to each other's products and services".

"Google made a change today at around 3 pm".

Google is preventing its YouTube video service from working on Amazon's line of hardware products, raising the stakes in a rivalry between two tech giants as their businesses increasingly overlap.

Google's move is the latest in a long back and forth between the two tech companies as they battle for dominance across hardware and entertainment products. Google also left the Fire TV off the list of streaming players to be supported by YouTube TV in what is likely a continuation of their fight with Amazon.

A person familiar with Google's thinking on the matter told Engadget that a big point of contention had been the fact that Amazon implemented what was essentially a hacked version of YouTube on both the Echo Show and Fire TV. Apple announced that it would be launching a version of the Amazon Prime Video app for Apple TV. The "lack of reciprocity" led Google to kill YouTube on Amazon's products. Google began notifying Amazon Fire TV customers that they will not be able to access YouTube on the device starting January 1, 2018. Neither can its Chromecast video streaming device.

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Amazon recently got YouTube to work again on the Echo Show, but in a roundabout way that wasn't sanctioned by Google. The speculation is that Amazon broke features Google relies on to track ads and earn money from YouTube videos.

That's not an unreasonable position to take, as the company surely wants more control over the YouTube experience on Amazon's products, but unfortunately the only people getting hurt in this feud are customers.

Google and Amazon, of course, have an interesting relationship insofar that the Google products referenced above compete directly with offerings from Amazon.

The inability to access YouTube from an otherwise capable streaming device is undoubtedly a huge drawback for Echo Show and Fire TV owners.

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