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Google Pulls YouTube From Amazon Devices

08 December 2017

Years of squabbling between the rival tech companies, which make and sell competing media players that carry each other's streaming apps, has finally driven Google to the point of pulling YouTube-the US's most-watched streaming app-from Amazon's Fire TV and Echo devices.

"Given this lack of reciprocity, we are no longer supporting YouTube on Echo Show and Fire TV", Google said.

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.

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One of Engadget's sources also claims that Google wants Amazon to start selling some of its products like the Chromecast and Google Home, but Amazon is reluctant to do so since those would directly compete with its Fire TV devices and Echo smart speakers. Since Amazon also makes many similar products, it refuses to sell Google's (or the Apple TV, for that matter). Google's device is called Chromecast and has 36.9 million US users, according to research company eMarketer, while Amazon's Fire TV has 35.8 million users in the US.

Google has made a decision to cripple the Fire TV and Echo devices because Amazon refuses to sell Google's competing products - the Chromecast video and audio-streaming dongle and the Google Home smart speaker - as well as Google's Nest-branded smart home devices including internet-connected thermostats and home security systems.

Google and Amazon have been in a petty argument for a long, long time over various services: Amazon and Google see each other as competitors when it comes to selling you music, movies, and apps, so they do little spiteful things to each other.

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Last month, Amazon was able to bring back YouTube support on the Echo Show, albeit through a workaround. Amazon Prime Video subscribers already can't use the Google Chromecast to stream to their TVs because Amazon doesn't support it. Support on Echo Show is being disabled today while Fire Tv will lose the support on January 1, 2018.

Amazon's Peter Larsen introduces Amazon Fire TV during a press conference in NY on April 2, 2014.

"Adding voice experiences will unlock the next level of personalization and help us reach a new generation of consumers", said Tricia Nichols, Estee Lauder's vice-president of global consumer engagement, in a statement according to eMarketer. "Google is setting a disappointing precedent by selectively blocking customer access to an open website", a spokesperson said. Amazon went a step further, though, and removed Nest products from their site last month. We hope to resolve this with Google as soon as possible.

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Google is hoping to pressure Amazon into selling Google's products by taking away access to the world's most widely watched video service. A search for the Google Home via Amazon's virtual assistant Alexa instead surfaces Echo devices.

Google Pulls YouTube From Amazon Devices