Google builds YouTube TV back door on Roku platform

Roku responded to the YouTube app update, calling it “the clear conduct of an unchecked monopolist bent on crushing fair competition and harming consumer choice.” (Google)

As the standoff between Roku and YouTube TV carries on, Google has built a back door to let Roku users still access YouTube TV on the platform.

The company on Friday announced a new feature that provides access to YouTube TV through the YouTube app. The update will be available to all YouTube TV members on Roku over the next few days and Google said it will expand availability to “as many devices as we can over time.”

Google also offered an update on its ongoing negotiations with Roku. The company said that, as of right now, existing YouTube TV members still have access to the app on Roku devices, but that it’s in discussions with other partners to secure free streaming devices in case YouTube TV members face any access issues on Roku.

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Google said it’s also involved with long-term conversations with Roku to certify technical requirements in new Roku devices, which it said helps to ensure a “consistent and high-quality YouTube experience” across different devices including its own.

“We'll continue our conversations with Roku on certification, in good faith, with the goal of advocating for our mutual customers,” the company said.

Roku responded to the YouTube app update, calling it “the clear conduct of an unchecked monopolist bent on crushing fair competition and harming consumer choice.”

“Roku has not asked for one additional dollar in financial value from YouTube TV. We have simply asked Google to stop their anticompetitive behavior of manipulating user search results to their unique financial benefit and to stop demanding access to sensitive data that no other partner on our platform receives today,” the company said in a statement. “In response, Google has continued its practice of blatantly leveraging its YouTube monopoly to force an independent company into an agreement that is both bad for consumers and bad for fair competition.”