Remember Google TV? Google’s first real foray into getting Google services and Play apps into the loungeroom didn’t really take off in quite the way it could have done, but nonetheless the platform made its way onto a number of consumer devices, including early smart TVs from HiSense.
Google TV has largely been superseded by Android TV (which as we’ve seen on the Nexus Player last year is implemented rather well), and one of the big features of Google TV — YouTube integration — appears to be on its last legs. You see, YouTube on Google TV makes use of somewhat dated YouTube APIs, which are about to be retired so Google can accommodate features for newer versions.
It isn’t just Google TV platforms that will feel the pinch; some older smart TVs and Blu-Ray players, and other devices with embedded YouTube support may quickly find themselves unable to access YouTube like they once did. I’m immediately suspecting my Sony TV will lose its ability to access YouTube videos, but in all honesty, I can’t remember the last time I watched one using the TV’s rather dated interface; Chromecast makes it a much easier proposition and has done for quite some time.
If you’ve got some older tech and you’re not sure whether YouTube will continue to work, it might be time to look at your options for an upgrade, whether it be via a Chromecast for under $50 from Dick Smith or JB HiFi, a set top box that includes the features, or looking to see whether a newer Android TV system is available to you.