Google announced late on Friday that it is shutting down a few more services: Google Apps For Teams, Google Listen and Google Video for Business.
"We introduced Google Apps for Teams in 2008 to allow people with a verified business or school email address to collaborate using non-email applications from Google like Google Docs, Google Calendar and Google Talk," says Google Director of Engineering, Max Ibel. "Over time, we realized that Google Apps for Teams was not as useful for people as we originally anticipated."
On September 4, Google Apps for Teams accounts will be converted into personal Google accounts, as the service shuts down.
"We launched Google Listen through Google Labs in August 2009, to give people a way to discover and listen to podcasts," says Ibel. "However, with Google Play, people now have access to a wider variety of podcast apps, so we’ve discontinued Listen. People who have already installed the app can still use it, but after November 1, podcast search won’t function."
Users' podcast subscriptions will still be accessible via Google Reader, in the "Listen Subscriptions" folder, where they can be downloaded.
Last month, Google announced that it was shutting down Google Video, and this time its Google Video for Business.
"Google Video for Business is a video hosting and sharing solution that allowed Google Apps for Business and Google Apps for Education customers to use video for internal communication," explains Ibel. "Starting this fall, we’ll migrate all videos hosted on Google Video for Business over to Google Drive, which has similar storage and sharing capabilities. All migrated videos will be stored for free and will not count against a user’s Google Drive storage quota."
Usually, when Google shuts down services, there tends to be a significant amount of backlash from users who were happy with the product. The company has shut down over 30 products since Larry Page took over as CEO last year. Some have had bigger backlashes than others, but nobody can say Google hasn't tried a ton of ideas.
Google also indicated that it will be shutting down a number of its blogs. It has over 150 of them, and has decided that consolidating the information that would have been spread out across these is a better strategy to ensure that more people are actually reading that information. Google will shut down the ones that are either updated infrequently or are redundant with other blogs. This should cut down on Google's own duplicate content. They do a lot of cross-posting.
Last week, Google shut down the Google Mobile blog, but introduced a new Android blog to replace it. The former now redirects to the latter.