YouTube TV released a statement today regarding the recent dispute with Roku. As of this morning, Roku can no longer download the YouTube TV app. For now, the YouTube TV app can still be accessed by users who have already installed it. The YouTube app is not affected at this time.
YouTube TV representatives emailed this response to The Streamable: “In light of Roku’s current stance, we encourage you to reach out to their customer support team to request they keep YouTube TV on Roku devices here or tweet @roku.”
The negotiations between the two companies began as it was time for Roku to renew its contract with Google. Google explains, “Our initial conversations started with Roku simply to renew the current terms of their ongoing deal with YouTube TV, which has been in place for several years. Our offer to Roku was simple and still stands: renew the YouTube TV deal under the existing reasonable terms.”
Roku initially stated that Google was attempting to implement “anticompetitive” terms, including modifying search results and demanding more expensive hardware. Google denies these claims, stating, “To be clear, we have never, as they have alleged, made any requests to access user data or interfere with search results. This claim is baseless and false.”
In the negotiations, Roku requested “exceptions” for Google’s technical agreements. Google explains how this would affect video quality and other important features, saying, “Our agreements with partners have technical requirements to ensure a high quality experience on YouTube. Roku requested exceptions that would break the YouTube experience and limit our ability to update YouTube in order to fix issues or add new features. For example, by not supporting open-source video codecs, you wouldn’t be able to watch YouTube in 4K HDR or 8K even if you bought a Roku device that supports that resolution. “
Google claims that “Roku has often engaged in this tactic with other streaming providers,” adding that Roku terminated the agreement in “bad faith.”
It doesn’t sound like this battle is over yet, though. Google promises to continue fighting for its users. The company concludes its statement, writing, “We understand the concern members may have about this and we don’t take this lightly. We are committed to ensuring our members continue to have access to YouTube TV and will continue advocating on behalf of our members.”
If the dispute affects you, YouTube TV can still cast to your TV through the Roku.
How to cast YouTube TV
- Connect your mobile device or computer and streaming device to the same Wi-Fi network.
- Open YouTube TV on your mobile device or computer.
- Tap Cast or AirPlay in the top right.
- Select your device.
- YouTube TV will open.
- If you’re playing a video, it should automatically begin playing on your TV.
- Use your mobile device or computer to control YouTube TV on your TV.