Google and Amazon bickering steps up a level

Herbert Rhodes
December 7, 2017

For its part, Amazon, through a spokeswoman, said that Alphabet's Google unit is "setting a disappointing precedent by selectively blocking customer access to an open website". Here's hoping that both parties can come to some form of agreement soon.

The two companies compete in a number of areas, including in cloud computing and in selling voice-controlled devices like the Amazon Echo and Google Home. The video service will be pulled from the Echo Show today, while Fire TV owners will lose access to it on January 1, 2018. The application eventually made its way back to the Amazon Echo Show recently, as intended, but the shopping giant has already taken the interesting step of removing Google hardware from its sales.

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

As for streaming TV alternatives, just about any other device will play YouTube. Similarly, Amazon Prime Video doesn't support Google's Cast feature, making it hard to get video to a big screen for Android users.

Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook first announced Prime Video support for Apple TV at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference in June, but the app's release had been delayed for unknown reasons.

Mike George VP Alexa Echo and Appstore for Amazon speaks during the LG press conference at CES in Las Vegas. Source Reuters
Mike George VP Alexa Echo and Appstore for Amazon speaks during the LG press conference at CES in Las Vegas. Source Reuters

The news affects the Echo Show personal assistant (the Alexa model with a screen) which will be silenced immediately, with Amazon Fire TV dongles and boxes losing access by the end of the year.

The Chocolate Factory on Tuesday said it would be filing suit against the Bezos Bunch after it failed to cut a deal to allow its own streaming services to coexist with those of Amazon.

Google's own Home smart speaker is a direct rival to Amazon's Echo line of products. In the statement, YouTube does say that it hopes "to resolve these issues soon".

At the launch of the original Echo in the United Kingdom, we were told that when it came to Google, the 'door is always open';, but it seems that both parties are refusing to compromise. Google had said that Amazon's implementation of YouTube blocked what Google considered critical features.

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