Apple says the next version of its software for the iPhone and iPad won’t come with a pre-installed YouTube application.
Users will be able to play YouTube videos in the web browser, says Apple spokeswoman Trudy Muller.
Google, which owns YouTube, is also working on a downloadable app, she says.
Ms Muller says Apple’s licence to include the YouTube app has expired, but did not explain why it hasn’t been extended.
Google says it’s working with Apple to ensure a quality YouTube experience.
Google has its own operating system for smartphones that compete with the iPhone. Apple has sued companies that use it, saying it copies features from the iPhone. In June, Apple said the next version of its operating system will replace Google Maps with an Apple app.