WinPhone YouTube app update removes downloads to appease Google

The Windows Phone YouTube app updated on Wednesday after Google demanded Microsoft completely remove it from the Windows Phone Store. 

Microsoft said it had issued the update to address Google's concerns over a video-download feature and the shortage of advertisements within the app. Microsoft had previously told The Verge that it would happily include the adverts if Google provided the necessary APIs, but today's update from Microsoft removed only the video-download feature.

"Microsoft updated the Windows Phone YouTube app to address the restricted video and offline video access concerns voiced by Google last week," said Microsoft in a statement. "We have been in contact with Google and continue to believe that our two companies can work together to hone an app that benefits our mutual customers, partners and content providers." 

Microsoft originally updated its YouTube app in early May - after a week of its being available on the Windows Phone Store - to support downloads and the full YouTube experience. Google immediately sent a cease and desist letter and requested Microsoft remove the app and disable existing downloads by May 22, 2013. 

"Unfortunately, by blocking advertising and allowing downloads of videos, your application cuts off a valuable ongoing revenue source for creators, and causes harm to the thriving content ecosystem on YouTube," stated Google's letter to Microsoft.

Despite Google's gripes, a Microsoft spokesperson told Wired yesterday that Google had "refused to work with us" to develop a YouTube app that was comparable with other platforms.

Microsoft's update to remove the video-download feature in the Windows Phone YouTube app is rolling out on the same day as Google's deadline.