Apple to Dump YouTube in iOS 6

By James DeRuvo (doddleNEWS)

When Tim Cook and his posse took to the stage at the annual World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC), they introduced iOS 6, a cloud centric mobile OS for iPhone and iPad, which would have some dramatic new features and link everything through a user’s Apple ID.   At the same time, Apple announced that they would be dropping Google Maps in favor of Apple’s own map app which offered not only directions, but a bird’s eye view in 3D.  But what they didn’t announce was what came out this week… that Apple was going to officially drop YouTube from it’s native iOS integration.  The official party line is that with the license agreement with Google concluded, Cupertino is simply moving on.  What does that mean?

“Our license to include the YouTube app in iOS has ended,” says Apple spokeswoman Trudy Muller. “Customers can use YouTube in the Safari browser, and Google is working on a new YouTube app to be on the App Store.”

According to USA Today, Apple dropping YouTube may largely be due to the fact that Google has begun to incorporate more ads into YouTube’s streaming, engaging in profit sharing with content creators.  Apple’s policy is to prohibit ads from running on iOS devices.  And since many content creators want to make money with their YouTube ads, many videos simply aren’t available through Apple’s YouTube App.

But let’s not forget that Apple has their own ad business plan which has iAds at it’s core.  Cupertino isn’t about to share revenue with Google through a patched up and updated video viewing app, which would likely be a logistical nightmare.  And word is that Apple is creating it’s own video service, which will be a competitor and will be integrated to iAds and give users a similar profit sharing structure as app developers have through iTunes.   So it was not only just easier to let their license expire, but also because Apple can’t get out from under Google’s shadow fast enough since they compete with them via Android.

Users can still enjoy YouTube videos via the Safari app, and Google already has plans to create their own YouTube viewer.  “”We are working with Apple to ensure we have the best possible YouTube experience for iOS users,” said Google representatives in a statement.  Which means that Apple will likely allow Google to have a separate app in the iTunes App Store.

Here’s hoping so.  Frankly, I’m not much of a fan of Apple’s YouTube app. It’s clunky, you can’t view all your subscriptions (only the first 20 or so), and it has very limited sharing features.  Also, not every YouTube video is available to the iOS app.  Course, it could be worse, it could be the Android version just ported over.  And if that’s the case, users will have a frustrating time with it.  But one way or another, they’ve got plenty of incentive to do it since according to Chetan Sharma, an independent mobile analyst, users use the YouTube App 15% to 20% more than any other app on the iPhone.


About James DeRuvo

James has a multi-faceted career that spans radio, film and publishing. A writer about the technology in the video industry for nearly 20 years, James is also an award winning film director, having garnered a Telly Award for his short film Searching for Inspiration. He's also worked as a producer of many talk radio programs in Los Angeles with topics ranging from entertainment to travel to technology.

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