iOS 6 Dropping Native Support for YouTube

First Google Maps, now YouTube. Apple is ditching the application on the latest version of its iOS mobile software.

Apple continues to divest itself from a dependence on Google applications by removing the YouTube application from Apple iOS 6 Beta 4, the latest developer release of company's mobile operating system. Technology blog The Verge received an email statement from Apple concerning the news, which was first noticed by the Apple-centric news site 9to5Mac.

"Our license to include the YouTube app in iOS has ended, customers can use YouTube in the Safari browser, and Google is working on a new YouTube app to be on the App Store," the statement to The Verge read.

The Google app will remain on iOS 5 and the company will work to provide a YouTube application developed for the latest iOS, Google said in a statement emailed to tech blog Engadget. Google told the site that while the deal with Apple had ended, users could still access YouTube through the Safari browser on the iPhone.

"We are working with Apple to ensure we have the best possible YouTube experience for iOS users," Google's email statement to Engadget said.

The news follows the introduction of an in-house mapping application developed by Apple, which was announced at its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June to be released on iOS 6. The mapping application would replace Google's Maps app and offer iPhone users spoken directional guides and 3D map visualizations. The application uses 3D mapping technology by C3 Technologies, which the company acquired in 2011. This followed earlier acquisitions of mapping-software companies Placebase and Poly9, which led analysts to think Apple was trying to wean its iOS devices off Google Maps.

As smartphones running Google's open-source Android operating system continue to gain traction in the ultra-competitive handset market€”recent reports indicate Apple is losing ground to market leader Samsung€”Apple is seemingly working toward an iPhone that has a minimal amount of Google software on it, offering consumers a clear choice in user experience and quality of applications. The stakes are high for Apple, which has seen market share dip and iPhone sales slide as consumers wait for the latest iteration of the iPhone, unofficially referred to as the iPhone 5.

The handset is expected to debut in September or October and offer a multitude of new features to help it better compete with its Android rivals. Chief among these new features is a larger 4-inch screen and near-field communications (NFC) technology, which could turn the handset into a digital wallet and allow it to communicate with other smart mobile devices.

One of the more controversial "upgrades" rumored is a new dock connector, which could render accessories designed to connect to older versions of the iPhone obsolete. The company may be ditching its standard 30-pin dock connector for a smaller, 19-pin connector at the bottom of the device, and could irk some party faithful who would have to replace any and all iPhone accessories that use the dock to connect to the smartphone.