Google bans YouTube from Amazon's Echo Show, Fire TV

Google Starts Blocking YouTube on Fire TV, Echo Show

Google blocked YouTube access via the Echo Show, Amazon's smart speaker with a touchscreen, on Tuesday and will stop supporting YouTube on Amazon's Fire TV set-top box on January 1.

The latest twist in the saga is that Google is pulling YouTube from all Echo Show and Fire TV units.

This latest development is the escalation of a long-simmering conflict that first bubbled to the surface in September, when Google started to block Amazon's implementation of YouTube on the Echo Show, the company's latest voice-enabled speaker with integrated display. The power being thrown around by these two giants is the type of conduct that has some talking about the need to break them up by way of anti-trust action.

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Amazon said in a statement, "Google is setting a disappointing precedent by selectively blocking customer access to an open website".

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.

Meanwhile, Amazon had previously stopped selling many of Google's hardware products on its e-commerce platform and since 2015 Amazon has refused to sell Google's Chromecast video and audio-streaming dongles. And what if this gets worse and Google cuts off Nest from Alexa?

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The rare public spat between two of the world's most powerful companies highlights increasing tensions as they spread their ambitions to new products and industries. Amazon also refuses to add support for Chromecast in its Prime Video apps.

Both parties have said that they hope the matter will be resolved soon, but neither looks likely to budge. A couple of weeks ago, Echo Show users were told to use the web version of YouTube as a workaround, once again bringing the application back to the smart speaker.

"We've been trying to reach agreement with Amazon to give consumers access to each other's products and services", a Google spokeswoman said.

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