In November 2011, Google’s spring clean saw a number of services shut down like Knol, Friend Connect and Google Wave. This added the number of services closed or combined to thirty and as usual paving way for superior ones.
Matt Eichner, General Manager, Global Enterprise Search in a blog post says;” Technology creates tremendous opportunities to improve people’s lives. But to make the most of them, we need to focus—or we end up doing too much and not having the impact we strive for. So last fall we started a spring clean, and since then we’ve closed or combined more than 30 products”.
Google at the moment is shutting down iGoogle, Google Video, Chatback, Google Mini, and the Symbian Search App.
According to Eichner, Google Mini has been an important part of Google’s Enterprise Search offering since its introduction in 2005 and was helpful however it will be discontinued on July 31, 2012. Google Mini, a hardware search appliance for enterprises will be replaced by Google Search Appliance, Google Site Search and Google Commerce Search.
Current users of the service should not worry as Google promises continued technical support until their contracts expire and advice on which service to take up.
Another service facing the axe is Google Talk Chatback.
Google Talk Chatback a text chat widget for Web publishers allowed websites to embed a Google Talk widget so that they could engage with their visitors. It’s now outdated, so we’re turning off Chatback and encouraging websites to use the Meebo bar, from an instant message company recently acquired by Google.
Some may not remember Google Video, the service stopped taking uploads in May 2009 but still has hosted content and a number of users. Google therefore says that it will be taking the hosted content to YouTube later this summer and the remaining users are asked to migrate, delete or download their content by August 20.
Another service, iGoogle launched in 2005 will be switched off on 1st November 2013. According to Eichner, iGoogle is a combination of RSS reader and widget platform personalized, real-time information. iGoogle at the moment cannot compete with newer apps on platforms like Chrome and Android . iGoogle users have been given up to 16 months to download and export their data.
Google will also axe the Symbian Search App and current users are asked to move to www.google.com . The search giant encourages users to switch from the app to the web experience for the most web-wide improvements.
And though closing products always involves tough choices says Google,” Streamlining our services enables us to focus on creating beautiful technology that will improve people’s lives”.