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Google Angers People By Shutting Down Products

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Google Angers People By Shutting Down Products
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Google has come up with a lot of great ideas over the years. The company has also acquired many great products. Sometimes Google’s ideas don’t pan out the way they want them to, however, and products get shut down. It’s happened a lot since co-founder Larry Page stepped back into the CEO role. Google’s latest round of “spring cleaning” came this week, when the company announced it would shut down: The Google Mini, Google Talk Chatback, Google Video, iGoogle and the Google Symbian Search App.

What products has Google shut down that you wish they hadn’t? Let us know in the comments.

Here are some of the other services Google has shut down since Page took over as CEO in April of last year:

Google Buzz
Google Wave
Code Search
Jaiku
Google Labs
Google Bookmarks Lists
Google Friend Connect (for non-Blogger sites)
Google Gears
Google Search Timeline
Knol
Renewable Energy Cheaper than Coal (RE Realtime Search (thanks to non-renewal of Twitter deal)
University Research Program for Google Search (API access to Google search results)
Google Health
PowerMeter
Slide (and Super Poke Pets)
Aardvark
Google Desktop
Fast Flip
Google Maps API for Flash
Google Pack
Google Web Security
Image Labeler
Google Notebook
Sidewiki
Subscribed Links
Google Message Continuity
Needlebase
Picnik
Social Graph API
Urchin

Forgive me if I missed any. There's something of a Graveyard for failed Google products on Pinterest.

While Google may not find many of its products worth keeping around, there are almost always users who did use them, and are unhappy that about their demise. Fans were furious about Super Poke Pets, for example. Now, there has been a fair amount of outcry regarding iGoogle.

As previously reported, Google’s forums have been getting a lot of negative feedback about the decision. Perhaps if enough people express continued interest in the product, Google will decide to keep it after all. I doubt it, but perhaps.

Here are some of the comments Drew Bowling pulled out of the forum in the other article:

I am flabbergasted by Google’s decision to drop iGoogle I have used it daily as my homepage since it’s initial launch and have no clue what I might use as a similar alternative.

Conrad, please do NOT kill iGoogle. I use it as my browser home page for my office desktop, home laptop, GNex and Android tablet. It perfectly aggregates my feeds and information from my favorite sites – and it how I learned about iGoogle being killed off.

I am switching to Netvibes and washing my hands with Google. Time after time they cancel or change services I use and I’m tired of it.

What was the point of “supporting iGoogle over the years”, when the “support” of tens of millions of users simply ends up with the plug being pulled?

Nice, get rid of the ONE thing I use daily… Good thinking, Google, I love it. What a bunch of dummies.

I’ve tolerated a lot of google changes. And not all have been bad. Overall, I think I’ve been pretty accepting of change, but this goes way too far.

really bad move google. i will never have a smart phone, so your blithe expectation of me to use apps to replace igoogle is misplaced at best.

Incredibly bad move. Have used iGoogle for yeras. Will now try to find an alternative to all google products as soon as I can….

Dude, this sucks! iGoogle is my home page on every computer I own and synchronizes everything between work and home.

Truly insane. You can’t tell me the meager resources used to keep what is basically a glorified newsreader up and running would seriously impinge upon Google’s other projects. I’ve defended Google for many years, but no longer. It’s a very poor practice to junk a product without an alternative waiting in the wings. Shame on you for basically abandoning users like me.

Sad news. I wish they would’ve discontinued Google+ instead.

Uh the whole RATIONALE behind retiring iGoogle is ‘eroding’ support. Really, Really, More like you just wanting to push the app store out there.

“On November 1, 2013, iGoogle will be retired,” Google says. “We originally launched iGoogle in 2005 before anyone could fully imagine the ways that today’s web and mobile apps would put personalized, real-time information at your fingertips. With modern apps that run on platforms like Chrome and Android, the need for iGoogle has eroded over time, so we’ll be winding it down. Users will have 16 months to adjust or export their data.”

On one hand, I get Google’s point about the way the web has evolved, eroding the need for something like iGoogle in the process. I’m pretty sure I’ve written about this in the past (though I’m having a hard time digging it up). For Chrome users, for example, the default home page serves just fine for many users. On the other hand, however, it seems like Google is eliminating a way to keep Google in front of more users every time they open their browser, and I’m not sure that’s the best move, especially since there do seem to be quite a few people that use it and like it.

“All of your personal data stored in other Google products will continue to be available via those products, including Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Finance, Google Docs (now Google Drive), Google Bookmarks, and Google Tasks,” says Google. “Other gadgets, like the to-do list, allow you to export your data – look for the ‘Download all’ option under the drop-down menu tied to the title of your list. Most iGoogle gadgets are created and maintained by third-party developers. If you’d like to export your data, you should contact the gadget creator directly.”

If you’re looking for iGoogle alternatives, Google suggests, “On your mobile device, Google Play offers applications ranging from games to news readers to home screen widgets. If you’re a fan of Google Chrome, the Chrome Web Store provides a similar range of options like productivity tools and applications to check the weather. In addition, just like iGoogle, you can personalize Chrome with a theme.”

What do you think? Are you upset to see iGoogle go? What about any of the other products? Let us know in the comments.

Google Angers People By Shutting Down Products
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  • http://youtube sarah

    please do not take google away computers would be nothing with out it cause if youtube gose away then computers will mean nothing to me anymore i hate the bill of rights they always have to overpower us and take away the things we love most on the internet i love youtube i am not going to stand by and watch it be shutdown

    • http://www.webpronews.com/author/chris-crum Chris Crum

      I think YouTube is safe.

      • http://seo-mysite.tk Dr Robert

        CHRIS: I believe YouTube is going to go through an overhaul. It may be safe for the moment but… tweaking. There is new software and hardware coming.

  • http://www.eduardocano.es Eduardo

    Google Desktop, I miss it so much! :-)

  • Chuck Sorensen

    I,too, enjoy iGoogle, on my laptop and on my tablet. I find it to be very useful, and will have a hard time adjusting to its demise.

    • http://www.jltcreative.com JLT Creative

      Same here, no idea why they had to drop iGoogle.

  • http://saveigoogle.org SaveiGoogle.org

    We think the callous delivery and, more importantly, the ill-defined path to alternatives is what has users and developers most upset. Google still hasn’t made an official post in the iGoogle developer forum. Check out SaveiGoogle.org for links to various resources and petitions along with facebook and twitter pages. There’s more to come as we have time to spin up the website and more social presence.

  • http://www.jimsanfilippo.com Jim Sanfiippo

    I use iGoogle on all my computers and all my browsers. I am going to miss it…

  • http://ddandhservices.com John Vickers

    I rely in iGoogle and am angry over the decision to turn this off. If it were up to me I’d say shut off Google+ which I think is utterly useless.

  • http://www.pixielatedpixels.com Chris Lord

    I’m damn pissed about this. I use iGoogle everyday on my main machine & my laptop. I have no idea about what to use instead unless I go back to using “Excite: as my homepage – UGH! Is that still around? I will never use a smartphone or Android so have no use for apps at all, I can’t be the only one left….can I?

    • http://seo-mysite.tk Dr Robert

      CHRIS, my friend: I switched to using WebCrawler.com GET all 3 of the SEs in one *Google, *Yahoo, and *Bing. I am looking at LinkedIn getting a search engine before long…

    • sc

      Right with ya – this just sucks and Google is just going to lose out in the long run – guess I’ll just sell my shares now before they sink….

  • Luke

    My two cents… people shouldn’t get so attached to beta products. Just saying.. it’s beta… it’s free…. they don’t want to do it anymore for their own reasons. Your not entitled to anything. Maybe we should have free health care paid for by Google or Microsoft? And it should be free and they should never take it away. Really, they can do what they want with their products. They’ve done more good than any other company of their size or type. I still miss several old products, but instead of bitching and morning over them. I moved on. If you don’t like it, there’s always Bing. HAHA!

    P.S. And if I’m wrong feel free to correct me, just please post a link to prove it. From what I remember, Netvibes uses at least part of Google Analytic’s, lol. So whoever it was that mentioned it, doesn’t seem to my like your doing all that much to get away from Google.?

  • al

    got rid of query
    i always saved certain things in search but now that is gone .
    and so is google now i use bing or targ8 which is powered by google bing yahoo

  • http://askmepc-webdesign.com Linda Lee

    My entire family uses igoogle. I tried netvibes and other solutions and they are terrible. I like my start page to be quiet and simple with what I need. I hate Yahoo’s mess of a start page. Google needs to keep igoogle. The only reason I ever login to google is this start page.

  • Steven Green

    Igoogle total waste of time no surprised they dropping it

  • http://eigo.co.uk eigo development

    Unless there is a world computer crash, i don’t think Google are going away anytime soon!
    Any web based company will move and shift their products and services. We just hope its for the good to provide better quality long term.

    Eigo.co.uk

  • http://www.prosolutiononline.net Hossam

    I am waiting for solution. But every day asking my self what instead, what same value?!!! i feel masy…..

  • http://seo-mysite.tk Dr Robert

    THErE are 3 GOOGLE Products in general: iGoogle, Buzz, Connect Friends… iGoogle, in my opinion, better than the regular Google Search. Buzz, was like a free Enzine PR channel for Googlers… I dont know which on I like better between Google Plus or Connect Friends. Something I see in the future is the loss of BlogSpot. I AM HOPEFUL that there is an upgrade or overhaul of webmaster tools as well. I know there were many of us upset at the losses of several good running services…

  • http://www.macgames.info www.macgames.info

    Well people anger a lot of people lately, especially small business owners who got hit by a stupid algorithm that says that if you have too many exact links you get penalised when in the first place google recommanded people to get links with anchor texts to define what a site should be about…

  • http://www.easyfundraisingcards.com Fundraising Cards

    Don’t forget perhaps the biggest one of all…

    Igoogle – at least they are giving us a 18 month notice

  • http://www.infowars.com Banatu

    What the hell is iGoogle?

    I guess that sums up my feelings on this subject! :D

  • http://engineeringjobsuk.blog.com/ Richard

    its hard for most users to keep up with whats going on

  • Steve Gogulski

    I was upset to hear that google was removing their igoogle page as of November 1st. I have used igoogle as my Homepage for years with many useful apts and links customized to my likings. Once I heard they were closing down igoogle I looked for an alternate that was simular to the igoogle. It appears MSN has one and I anticipate many will start using it. I can’t understand why google would shut down igoogle when so many people enjoy using it. I truly hope they change their mind.

  • http://www.lescygnes.net Graeme Swan

    Google ig my homepage and all my stuff on one page – try others and don’t like them!

  • http://josephratliff.com/blog Joseph Ratliff

    These are free products people. Google can implement and shut down any division or product it sees fit… because it is their business.

    Right now, the products being shut down don’t fit in Google’s future plans, and Google is probably redirecting resources towards projects where it makes more sense to them.

    Unfortunately, that doesn’t have to make sense to us. I’ve had a couple of Google products that I was using, which were shut down as I was developing my use of them.

  • http://www.gbepackaging.com Tony

    Well Google search is so off base anyways, I do not think it matters what Google drops or keeps they just want you to pay more so they can get their cut. Our customers are looking for lower prices on packaging supplies, boxes, bags, bubble and the only way they will find us on Google is if we pay Google large amounts of money on an adwords campaign. But then we would have to raise prices to our customers and Google is the only winner. I think people are starting to see that Google is changing the rules so only they profit at the end of the day. Most of our business is via word of mouth as there is no better advertisment than having the lowest prices on the web. There are two factors raising prices in the packaging industry and those are the oil companies and Google. Never thought I would have to put Google in the same class as oil companies because if they have their way you all will be paying for our PPC as well as your product you need to operate. If people knew just how much Google is charging for traffic then no one would use or like Google. I mean we all know that costs forced on businesses are just passed on to the customer. We have the lowest prices for packaging supplies so for now we are saving money for thousands of customers every week. Google wants you to pay more but not at GBE Packaging.

    It is all about adwords. They are making the search useless so adwords are our only choice if we want Google traffic.

    If you search for the lowest price on anything you will get the company paying for those words not the company with the lowest price. lol Thats what this is all about not free apps.

  • Cor Aarns

    I don’t really care about youtube , I have it blocked from my search results (and no way to unblock it , thanks google!) .

    What worries me more is the crappy search results I’m getting lately . Searching for something specific is getting tricky . (double”",+,etc.) . Maybe I should give Bing another go ..

  • http://k0bg.com Alan Applegate

    When you’re the proverbial 500 pound gorilla, you can do anything you want! That notwithstanding, nothing on earth evolves as fast as the Internet. If you fail to evolve, you end up like the dodo bird. They do what they have to do.

  • http://www.besheerarttile.com Ken Besheer

    Dashboard
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    9 View comments

    LukeMay 31, 2012 10:32 AM
    Seems like a bogus move to me. Switching everything to ads. Lost a large chunk of my ‘Google feel good’ feeling with this. The most recent moves by the company show a transition away of letting the little guy play to being a ‘big brand’ play ground only.

    Reply

    Luke LathamMay 31, 2012 4:34 PM
    Charging small business for Product Search will price them right out of it the same way that $1-$5 per click for AdWords ads priced small business right out of that system. In my opinion, this is a DISASTER for small business competing against the big boys if I’m reading this correctly!

    And let’s face it … this line is absolutely disingenuous:

    “Today we’re announcing a new initiative to improve our shopping experience over time–so that shoppers (your customers) can easily research purchases, compare different products, their features and prices, and then connect directly with merchants to make their purchase.”

    This is about Google MAKING MONEY! It has nothing to do whatsoever with improving the “shopping experience.”

    Luke Latham, CEO & Chairman
    SellRex Corporation
    http://www.sellrex.com/
    Twitter: @sellrex
    Facebook: facebook.com/sellrex

    Reply

    UnknownMay 31, 2012 5:52 PM
    If i am reading this correctly, it sounds like google is changing Shopping to a per click service. This is one of the worst ideas i have ever heard! Google shopping has been one of the biggest pain in the butts to work with over the last 3 years that we have been using it. We have spent thousands of dollars in man hours to get it to function. If it was a cost based service back then we would of just thrown in the towel. Please don’t ruin Google Shopping!

    Reply

    BenjaminJune 1, 2012 2:49 AM
    What about other Countries in Europe? Are there any plans?

    Reply
    Replies

    Commerce BlogJune 1, 2012 4:09 PM
    This change is only for the United States currently. Thanks for your question.

    Reply

    TylerJune 1, 2012 1:48 PM
    :/

    Reply

    Caleb SolanoJune 1, 2012 2:58 PM
    This appears to be another shot at small businesses from Google. How can small businesses hope to compete with larger companies like Amazon, Target, Wayfair, etc. in putting money up for ads. Google shopping ha not been a level playing field in a while, but this just makes things infinitely worse.

    Reply

    Completely BrokeJune 1, 2012 3:32 PM
    Seriously Google, why don’t you just start charging to index pages? It’s where you’re heading…

    Reply

    VPRJune 1, 2012 4:05 PM
    Our company installs about 1,000 workstations each year, in every case with Google set as the search provider. We have preferred Google because of its honest approach to search, as well as the fact the search page is clean and loads quickly.

    Effective today, our policy has changed. I know it isn’t much, but we are not supporting the rigging of search in this manner. I am confident others will see the benefits in seeking out other search alternatives that don’t reflect a compelling need to prioritize the highest paying companies leaving smaller companies (like ours) to twist in the breeze.

    Reply

  • Ernest_cook@hotmail.com

    I find it amusing when people are mad that a free service is discontinued. Seriously people? How about you send them a check,offering to BUY the product.

  • http://publishedpage.com Jim Hart

    I hate the ending of iGoogle. I have used it as my start up page for years, and love the easy access it gives me to news and areas of interest I try to follow.

    While I suppose it will be possible to duplicate this type of connection, I will truly miss the ease and smoothness of the iGoogle connection.

  • http://common-nature.com kirk keller

    If you want a company like Google to innovate, you have to allow them to put products in public beta for user feedback. To get good user feedback, the betas have to be supported to the extent that users adopt them and really ‘kick the tires’. But, most importantly, to continue to innovate, users have to allow a company manage its portfolio of betas and shut down some… freeing support resources for new innovations. Fail that and you shackle beta deployment and stifle innovation.

  • Leroy

    The biggest thing I miss is YAHOO

  • doby1

    google just sucks, period!

  • Sungwapa

    Did the Metro UI kill igoogle..?

  • Sungwapa

    Metro killed igoogle

  • http://www.planetcentral.com Darrah Catherman

    Shutting down iGoogle? Seriously? Wow!

  • http://www.alfaomegaconstruction.com martin kulik

    I am very surprised that they shut down Google labs which was great tool for kids and students to learn and research.
    My son was so excited about human body and anatomy and learn a lot from it until they said that the application is no longer available because they are working on improving and upgrading the app and will be coming soon. So my guess is it will not come…… very disappointed!
    If anyone knows about some other applications similar to labs let me know.
    Thank you.

  • Henri

    Google does what they want when they want it and to who they want.
    Another “posession” of Google that were not talking here is Youtube.
    Youtube decided to put their own ads on my videos.
    Sometimes they even put my competitors ads on my videos
    I’m in real estate.
    It’s like if I went to the trouble of making videos for my competitors
    I put the music that comes bundled with with movie maker (Microsoft) and now youtube says it’s copyrighted music.
    What looks free might not be free after all.
    Henri

  • http://www.wacek.co.za Wacek

    Yes, I am upset to see iGoogle go! Not fair for many of your customers, Google!

  • http://cardisa.hubpages.com Carolee

    I too was shocked and disappointed when I saw that Google was getting rid of iGoogle. I have used iGoogle with every browser I have used since it’s launch. I have all my personal blog and website feeds there plus info I like to see when I login. I love iGoogle and don’t know what the alternative will be after November 13, 2013. At least they are giving us notice unlike the other day when they removed Bejewelled Blitz from the games directory.

  • rowan

    I have always used igoogle and love it as my home page where everything I need is in the one place. I can’t afford to have internet on my phone as well as the computer at home so I will never get a smart phone. Bad decision Google. Your rep with me has gone way down and I can’t trust you any more.

  • sc

    iGoogle being ended is just hokey – I do not use Chrome and will not use Chrome ever – Firefox suits me fine and now I have to find another homepage for my browser – sounds like Yahoo will take that place since they get the need for a home page for browsers to get mind share – which Google will certainly lose that along with the search tool I will use now will be ask.com….Google you are blowing a good thing – I just hope your share price doesn’t feel the impact of this or I will be selling all of my cards!

  • Joons

    Is anybody counting the number of products that Apple has deep sixed recently and left a large base of people stranded – Oh no – Apple can do no wrong let’s go kick Google, today’s whipping boy

    • dl

      This is not about APPLE troll. It’s about Google.

  • Kai

    I was apart of the Google AdSense program for a number of years with fairly good results. Following their terms to the letter I left the AdSense program approximately one year ago and not only do they not respond to my written and verbal communications, Google has not paid me the final money that I earned. Somehow I think there are other people that Google is not paying also. I am not just sitting on my hands, I have lodged complaints with the BBB, a North Carolina State legal entity, and an arm of the Federal Government. Perhaps if they won’t answer me, they will answer to a higher authority. We’ll see.

  • http://wwwvirtualphotoservices.com Tom Jelen

    This is what happens when you get a CEO that is arrogant and cares about his own back pocket his yes people will say anything to keep the high paying jobs they have.
    I for one will stop using igoogle when they stop the service and go somewhere else I’m tired of stupid changes like the demise of igoogle .
    I can go somewhere else that has consistency and get treated with the same disrespect the arrogant bastards that own igoogle do to their customers.. yea sure Im going to buy ad words now and support stupid decisions forget it.
    google your too big already and now your going to fail

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  • PC

    perhaps Google could choose some graduates of less prestigious colleges, who understand how hard it is to earn a customer, and how easy it is to lose them. iGoogle puts Google search front and center on the home pages for tens of millions of users. simply idiotic to throw us all away. How paternalistic, even snobbish to give us inferior choices such as. Maybe they just can’t stand the fact that Google+ is a ghost town. Perhaps the coud integrate iGoogle and Google+, to make it more meaningful to tens of millions more customers.

  • http://www.houstonchessclub2000.com Leonard Fusselman

    Just when we find something that works comfortably, it gets the file 13.

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  • http://www.marketbuilding.com Randy Rose

    I just learned that Google will be monetizing the Google Merchant product feed. I was setting up an account that had been dormant for a while, and I found out that we can no longer set up a product feed for free – we now have to pay for a google adwords account in order to keep the feed live. So, we won’t be doing it, as the business we are promoting is working on a shoestring budget right now. VERY disappointing!

  • http://www.blogtips.ca Enzo testa

    Who cares about google. The company has become too big as a monopoly and needs to be shut down. Enough is enough. I would like to get together with a few and create a new search engine that doesn’t treat people the way google does.

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