Microsoft blames Google for the lack of proper YouTube application on Windows Phone 7. Seriously?

Microsoft has just filed an anti-trust complain against Google in Europe today and part of it is related to a supposed blocking of YouTube Metadata access preventing Microsoft to release a proper YouTube application for Windows Phone 7. Here’s the official word on this:

First, in 2006 Google acquired YouTube—and since then it has put in place a growing number of technical measures to restrict competing search engines from properly accessing it for their search results. Without proper access to YouTube, Bing and other search engines cannot stand with Google on an equal footing in returning search results with links to YouTube videos and that, of course, drives more users away from competitors and to Google.

Second, in 2010 and again more recently, Google blocked Microsoft’s new Windows Phones from operating properly with YouTube. Google has enabled its own Android phones to access YouTube so that users can search for video categories, find favorites, see ratings, and so forth in the rich user interfaces offered by those phones. It’s done the same thing for the iPhones offered by Apple, which doesn’t offer a competing search service.

Unfortunately, Google has refused to allow Microsoft’s new Windows Phones to access this YouTube metadata in the same way that Android phones and iPhones do. As a result, Microsoft’s YouTube “app” on Windows Phones is basically just a browser displaying YouTube’s mobile Web site, without the rich functionality offered on competing phones. Microsoft is ready to release a high quality YouTube app for Windows Phone. We just need permission to access YouTube in the way that other phones already do, permission Google has refused to provide.

My question is: What is this special permission that Microsoft is talking about? Because there are already several third-party YouTube applications (and HTC’s) on Windows Phone 7 essentially offering most of the common features (Favorites, comments, rating, tags etc..) that Microsoft is talking about. Something doesn’t sound right at all in Microsoft’s complain and needs more explanation. Why can HTC and other third-parties do it on Windows Phone 7 and not Microsoft? Maybe Microsoft should  look into the freely available .NET YouTube API

source: Microsoft

  • Wayne Ward

    You should have said “Really!?!?” like on the WP7 commercials, instead of Seriously?

    You also should have added the simplicities like saving MY camera settings, a camera timer, the ability to make custom ringtones or have a Zedge app, and at least Silverlight support in the browser since Silverlight is a Microsoft product.

  • vangrieg

    What surprises you? I haven’t read YouTube terms of use, but usually what happens with such services is that you can use their APIs for free without any special permissions for non-commercial use or with some limitations such as transaction limits after which you can simply be cut off. Also, with standard terms Google can change APIs pretty much at will. In any of these cases, Microsoft couldn’t possibly engineer their services reliably. So yes, for serious commercial use you have to get special agreements.

    And the crux of the matter is that while HTC and others do get these permissions, Microsoft is refused.

  • Anonymous

    Isn’t Microsoft currently suing someone else over some WP7 related issue? It’s quite a change from a decade ago when MS seemed to always be on the receiving end of the lawsuits.

  • Atlas

    Android devices access Facebook wich as Microsoft, no one attempted to block them or prioritize the software in behalf of.. people just like to talk talh about it’s good for the guy that builded this site. lol

  • Yaniv C

    Well now that MS has merged with Nokia… Microkia will have a huge book of patents it can now throw at people. Law suits galore lol.
    With that said… I believe WP7 is truly a great OS and I love my Dell Venue Pro. Ive had every smartphone OS on the market and Im talking the higher end models (Samsung Galaxy S 4G, iPhone 4, HD2, Droid X, etc…)… and I still say WP7 outclasses them all.
    Cant wait to see if Microkia puts out a tablet based on WP7.