17 Aug 2013

Microsoft’s Antitrust Lawyer Has Some Words For Google About The Windows Phone YouTube App

Microsoft and Google are still fighting about the Windows Phone YouTube app. This has been going on for months, with no apparent resolution on the way.
Back in May, Google sent Microsoft a cease and desist letter for building a native YouTube app, claiming that it violated its terms of service in three areas. It allowed users to download videos, it prevented the display of ads in YouTube video playbacks and it played videos that Google’s partners had restricted from playback on certain platforms (like mobile devices).
“These features directly harm our content creators and clearly violate our Terms of Service,” Google said.
Since then, the two companies have actually been working together to deliver a suitable app that would both please Windows Phone users (and Microsoft) and meet Google’s conditions. Microsoft thought they had reached that point. Earlier this week, it released its new YouTube app, after addressing the aforementioned issues. Then, Google blocked it.
The Verge quotes a Microsoft spokesperson before the app was blocked:
We’ve released an updated YouTube app for Windows Phone that provides the great experience our consumers expect while addressing the concerns Google expressed in May, including the addition of ads,” says a spokesperson. Microsoft says it appreciates “Google’s support in ensuring that Windows Phones customers have a quality YouTube experience and look forward to continuing the collaboration.”
Then it quotes a Google spokesperson, and again a Microsoft spokesperson after the app was blocked:
“Microsoft has not made the browser upgrades necessary to enable a fully-featured YouTube experience, and has instead re-released a YouTube app that violates our Terms of Service,” says a Google spokesperson. “It has been disabled. We value our broad developer community and therefore ask everyone to adhere to the same guidelines.”

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