Apple vs Google: Now the YouTube app is for the chop

by Dale Wright

The iPhone 5 announcement is ever closer, and tech sites are buzzing with any scrap of news they can get their hands on. This week, a humble app has hit the headlines in a big way.

This week, Apple announced that the familiar (although not entirely intuitive) YouTube app icon will disappear from iOS devices once iOS is released. You’ll still be able to watch YouTube on your iPhone , iPod Touch or iPad, but you’ll have to do it via Safari.

YouTube Apple vs Google: Now the YouTube app is for the chop

Google say they’re working on their own YouTube app which will be available from the Apple app store shortly. This means that Apple will have less control over the way it works, although we’re unlikely to see any radical changes since Apple pass everything through quality control and testing.

In some ways, the removal of the YouTube app isn’t really surprising. Apple have already said that they’re going to ditch Google maps and replace it with their own mapping app in iOS 6. The relationship between the two companies is frosty: Steve Jobs was not a fan of Android (to put it lightly), and the fact that Apple are now distancing themselves further is no real surprise. Although the company point out that their licence for the app has expired, they may not have been in any rush to renew it anyway.

The change to iOS 6 has been spotted in the beta version which is currently in testing, and unlike the replacement of Google Maps, tech sites and gadget fans have generally responded positively. On the down side, it means Apple users are facing a future where they will no longer enjoy such easy integration with Google services; for that, you’ll need to switch to Android.

If you’re a fan of the YouTube app, you can ignore the upgrade to iOS 6 and keep it. However, Apple rarely sit still for long, and dismissing an upgrade on an Apple device usually means missing out on new features on your iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad. Many users will never have used the app anyway – so they may not even realise it’s gone.