In a rather surprising move today, Google chose to pull YouTube's services from Amazon Echo Show without any notice or warning. Amazon and Google square off in many areas, from cloud computing and online search, to selling voice-controlled gadgets like the Echo Show.
Hey, Google and Amazon, can we ask you to play nice with each other?
Tech website The Verge reported that it had discovered YouTube had stopped working on the Show, which houses Amazon's "Alexa" virtual assistant. You can use this remote to control the Fire TV as well as use Alexa to control smart home devices, stream music, and more.
Google argued that it had good reason to yank YouTube from the Show. We're also pretty sure that Amazon didn't want to permanently lose the support for its new platform as it will hurt the sale of the device which one of the primary reason for adding display is digital content consumption. Google Home, the company's own smart speaker, doesn't have a screen, but users can command it to cast YouTube video onto a nearby Chromecast, which is sort of the same thing.
For now, it appears Amazon and Google are going to battle it out and hopefully come to some agreement.
The smart Voice assistant Alexa responds to instructions such as, "play the song of the day", "Play the new Foo Fighters album", "Play music for cleaning".
That user experience includes access to related videos, autoplay, subscribership and other features that are lacking from the basic Echo Show interface.
Amazon acknowledges the issue, and at an event on Monday, a spokesperson said, "While Alexa and Lex (the technology powering Alexa) are not HIPAA-eligible, this (challenge) has provided us an opportunity to envision what is possible".