Amazon and Google make peace: YouTube to return to Fire TV and Prime Video coming to Chromecast

YouTube headquarters in San Bruno, Calif. (Flickr Photo / jm3)

Amazon and Google have resolved a long-running feud that kept YouTube off Fire TV devices for more than a year.

The two companies said “in the coming months,” they will re-launch YouTube on Amazon Fire TV devices and Fire TV Edition smart TVs. Amazon’s Prime Video app will also come to Chromecast devices and Android TVs.

In addition to YouTube, the companies pledged to launch YouTube TV and YouTube Kids apps on Fire TV devices later this year.

“We are excited to work with Amazon to launch the official YouTube apps on Fire TV devices worldwide,” Heather Rivera, global head of product partnerships at YouTube, said in a statement. “Bringing our flagship YouTube experience to Amazon Fire TV gives our users even more ways to watch the videos and creators they love.”

The announcement did not address YouTube on Amazon’s Echo Show device. YouTube was available on the device in the past, prior to the dispute between the companies, and Variety notes that a full-featured app could be on the way.

Google pulled the YouTube app off Amazon Fire TV at the beginning of 2018, leaving a big hole in the company’s streaming lineup. Amazon tried to fill the gap with a YouTube workaround using web browser apps on Fire TV devices.

This warning started popping up in late 2017 as Google prepared to pull YouTube off Amazon Fire TV devices. (GeekWire Photo / Nat Levy)

The seeds of the Fire TV-YouTube kerfuffle were planted close to four years ago. Amazon pulled Apple TV and Google’s Chromecast from its online store in 2015 because the devices didn’t work well with the Prime Video streaming service.

In September 2017, Google pulled YouTube from Amazon’s Echo Show, citing a terms of service violation. Soon after, multiple products made by Google-owned Nest disappeared from Amazon’s e-commerce marketplace.

YouTube returned to the Echo Show in November 2017, but Google pulled it again a couple weeks later. That’s when the search giant made the call to remove the streaming service from Fire TV and Fire TV Stick devices due to what it called a “lack of reciprocity” from Amazon.

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