Google will block access to YouTube on Amazon's Fire TV from January 1, 2018, and on Echo Show effective immediately.
If you fire up the YouTube application on the Fire TV right now, you are greeted with a notification that tells you that YouTube will become unavailable on the device starting January 1st, 2018.
Google pulled YouTube from Amazon Echo Show devices several months ago, but Amazon managed to get it back by redirecting users of its device to the web version of YouTube. While far from an ideal solution, it ensured that customers could access YouTube video content again using the device.
The following screenshot shows the notification on a German Fire TV. It states that YouTube won't be accessible anymore from January 1st, 2018 on and highlights that there are plenty of other devices that YouTube is supported on.
The Verge received a statement from YouTube in regards to the decision:
“We’ve been trying to reach agreement with Amazon to give consumers access to each other's products and services. But Amazon doesn't carry Google products like Chromecast and Google Home, doesn't make Prime Video available for Google Cast users, and last month stopped selling some of Nest's latest products. Given this lack of reciprocity, we are no longer supporting YouTube on Echo Show and FireTV. We hope we can reach an agreement to resolve these issues soon.”
According to it, Amazon is to blame for the removal of YouTube from Echo Show and Fire TV. Since YouTube is not blocked immediately on the Fire TV, it is possible that Google uses the threat of removal as leverage.
It is clear that both companies fight the fight on the back of users to push their own products. The companies blame each other for blocking products or removing access to services, but the one who suffers is the the user. Blocking access to services for any reason but technical ones is an anti-consumer move.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.