Tuesday, 12 December, 2017

Google pulls YouTube from Amazon Echo Show, Fire TV

Welcome to the Voice Wars Google pulls YouTube from Amazon Echo Show, Fire TV
Hannah Rogers | 07 December, 2017, 12:24

After customers of Amazon's Echo Show speaker and its Fire TV streaming device discovered yesterday that Google planned to pull YouTube videos from their devices, Amazon was quick to hit out.

In a statement, Google said it had been "trying to reach agreement with Amazon to give consumers access to each other's products and services" but, "given the lack of reciprocity", had chose to no longer support YouTube on Echo Show or FireTV.

In September, Google cut off YouTube from the Amazon Echo Show, which had displayed videos on its touchscreen without video recommendations, channel subscriptions and other features. "We hope we can reach an agreement to resolve these issues soon".

The Google-owned video service is cutting access to the Amazon device on January 1, a Google spokeswoman said Monday. Amazon on its part is trying to sort things out with Google. But the company did say that did not block consumer services and that Amazon users could still reach the website version of YouTube.com on the Echo Show and Fire TV.

It said it hoped to resolve the issue with Google as soon as possible but customers could access YouTube through the internet - not an app - on the devices in the meantime. Now Google has been unhappy with Amazon using its YouTube service on its devices and this was the first step to make Amazon agree to its demands. YouTube returned to the Show last month, just in time for Black Friday, but Google is again cutting access.

The spat also exposes how the interdependent state of streaming media - in which companies seeking to reach more viewers often partner with their competitors - can hurt consumers.

Amazon and Apple mended ties earlier this year when it was announced Prime Video would come to Apple TV. Amazon kicked the Chromecast, Google's television player, off its retail website in 2015, along with Apple Inc's TV player.

Amazon did not immediately respond to a request for a comment on whether Apple TV will return to Amazon's online store now that it supports Amazon Prime.

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