From my understanding the problem is Google can't get youtube working on Roku with ads (there main source of income). Thus no youtube which makes sense (except for the few conspiracy nuts out there)...
I don't think that it's fair to call people who think Google has other motives "conspiracy theorists".. It implies a little bit of insanity. Roku is the most used streamer out there, and surprise, Google just came out with the Chromecast (which has probably been in the development stage for a year). Maybe Google is intimidated by Roku, so they're not willing to assist in any way anymore.
The Roku 3 (and most likely, Roku 2), hardware is robust enough to display videos and ads. Youtube is on every "simple" streamer (this excludes the PS3, XBox, and Wii/WiiU, which have faster processors and larger RAM/cache).. OK, so maybe there's no REAL conspiracy, but maybe Roku has politely asked Google to develop a working Youtube channel, and Google said "Sure, ok, we're working on it, at our speed." Either way, I really doubt that an at least passable Roku Youtube channel isn't feasible. Maybe minus some of the bells and whistles of the Android and PC Youtube channels/page, but the same can be said for many other devices that use a "plain" Yotube app, like Blu-ray players, AppleTV, and Smart TVs.
I wonder, can anyone answer this- does the AppleTV (newest or previous generation) follow Google's standard for displaying ads and for using HTML5?
Yeah, I got some Rokus.