Microsoft and Google's playground antics

Image representing YouTube as depicted in Crun...

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Nothing like a bit of spirit of fair play to kick off the New Year is there? Well, this latest competition spat is nothing like that at all…

Microsoft has got on its high horse this week, writing a blog slamming Google for not playing ball and preventing access to certain YouTube data. This information is key to creating a specific app for the Windows Phone mobile operating system.

Instead, users have to go through the mobile website and viewing through a browser misses out on some specialist features apps on other OS’ offer, as well as the convenience factor.

Microsoft claims the reason Google is refusing to oblige is because it is a rival in the world of search. It is quite a sweet notion really. I mean, I know Bing is creeping up in the market share ranks but really, it is like Real Madrid’s defence being scared of our outsourcing editor approaching the half way line in bare feet.

Google has been aloof about the whole issue, with its spokesman telling me the HTML5 enabled mobile website offers Windows Phone users all it needs. Fair enough for not getting into a war of words but this defence is equally as purile.

As ever, the ones suffering here are users. As someone who actually enjoys using the latest Windows Phone software, it is frustrating the number of obvious seeming apps that are omitted from the store. YouTube is now a staple of mobile applications and to not have access to it, along with others, does make a user feel like they are missing out on something.

So, I see why Microsoft has kicked off as, as apps continue to be such a draw towards devices and their software, it could cause damage to its sales. But, writing a blog publically laying into Google and using words that make them sound like they are telling tales out of school to the teachers at the European Commission just smacks of desperation.

If your software is good enough and the devices you run it on are great, the lack of one app where users can still use a mobile-optimised website version is not going to sign your death warrant, Microsoft. Keep focusing on developing and building up your following through positive features on your phones, not drawing attention to the negatives.

And Google? Seriously? Remember Apple and the maps debacle? Please don’t subject us to an awful Microsoft YouTube rip off and start playing with the other mobile kids, ok?

Oh, and Happy New Year everyone!

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