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Google and Amazon: A Rising Feud

SHAUN HOOD, WRITER

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Anyone who owns a smartphone or computer is probably familiar with Google and Amazon and devout users of their products will soon be aware of the rising feud between the two companies.

Here are some of the causes of this rivalry:

  • Amazon and Google both have “personal assistant speakers.”
    • Amazon makes the line of Echo smart speakers and Google’s smart speakers are called Google Home.
  • Amazon and Google also both have TV streaming devices.
    • Google has the Chromecast and Amazon has the Fire TV.

These similarities in the two companies’ products have led to actions taken by both of them against one another which haven’t been beneficial to customers.

Recently, Amazon released a new Echo called Echo Show. When the Echo Show was originally released, Google-owned YouTube was built into it. According to “Bloomberg Technology,” Google pulled YouTube from the Echo Show because it did not show ads before videos and it did not provide users with a normal personalized YouTube experience; Amazon then returned YouTube to the Echo Show without Google’s permission. Google stepped in once again and pulled that version of YouTube from the Echo Show as well. Not only was Youtube pulled from the Echo Show at that time, but Google also said that right at the start of 2018, YouTube would be pulled from the Fire TV as well.

YouTube was pulled from the Fire TV three days earlier than it was supposed to be; it was pulled on December 28th rather than January 1st. However, there is a workaround that allows Fire TV users to play YouTube videos. YouTube can be accessed on the Fire TV by using a browser like Silk or Firefox. When the Fire TV is used for YouTube via Firefox, the interface is the same as it was on the app that was pulled from the device in December. There’s also a shortcut right on the start menu of Firefox. According to “The Verge,” the TV interface for YouTube briefly disappeared and returned to the Firefox browser on the Fire TV. During that time, Fire TV users who wanted to use YouTube needed to use the desktop interface on Firefox. I do not know what it’s like using YouTube in the Silk browser, however, Firefox is a more popular workaround for this issue. Amazon, on the other hand, is not selling any of Google’s devices. According to “The Verge,” Amazon said that they were going to start selling the chromecast again. However, the article said that over a month after that statement, the Google Home devices still cannot be purchased from Amazon.

To find more information on this feud, read the articlesmentioned throughout this story. The links are below.

 

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-01-08/how-the-amazon-google-feud-is-hurting-customers

 

https://www.theverge.com/2018/1/22/16921102/google-breaks-amazon-fire-tv-youtube-workaround

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Google and Amazon: A Rising Feud