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Roku says it will remove the YouTube TV app today amid dispute with Google

As heated negotiations continue, the inevitable has happened. Google’s YouTube TV app has just disappeared from the Roku platform amid the ongoing dispute.

Here’s the bad news. The YouTube TV app is no longer available to download from the Roku channel store on any devices. The good news? If you already had the YouTube TV app installed on your Roku set-top box or TV, it won’t be removed. You can still use it as long as you don’t manually remove the app or reset the device. New subscriptions, though, won’t work from a Roku device.

Notably, too, at the time that Roku notified the press via email of the app’s removal, it’s still available for download even if you remove it from your device.

This is the result of the ongoing dispute between Google and Roku, which earlier this week saw Google accused of trying to manipulate search results and push Roku into using more expensive materials for its famously cheap hardware. Google has denied the accusations, calling Roku’s accusations “baseless” and saying that Google has made “no requests to access user data or interfere with search results.”

In a statement regarding the official removal of YouTube TV, Roku said:

We are disappointed that Google has allowed our agreement for the distribution of YouTube TV to expire. Roku has not asked for one dollar of additional financial consideration from Google to renew YouTube TV.

We have only asked Google for four simple commitments. First, not to manipulate consumer search results. Second, not to require access to data not available to anyone else. Third, not to leverage their YouTube monopoly to force Roku to accept hardware requirements that would increase consumer costs. Fourth, not to act in a discriminatory and anticompetitive manner against Roku. ​

Because our contract has expired, we have removed YouTube TV from our channel store. To continue to provide our users with a great streaming experience, we are taking the extra step to continue to offer existing subscribers access to YouTube TV on the Roku platform unless Google takes actions that require the full removal of the channel. Because of Google’s conduct, new subscriptions will not be available going forward until an agreement is reached.   ​

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