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3/20/2013
06:18 PM
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Google Keep Arrives, But For How Long?

Will Google Keep be kept? Plans to discontinue Google Reader have users worried about Google's new answer to Evernote.

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Google on Wednesday launched its note-taking app, Google Keep, two days after pre-release screenshots of the app surfaced.

Katherine Kuan, software engineer at Google, said in a blog post that Google Keep was created to ensure that notes are where you need them when you need them.

"With Keep you can quickly jot ideas down when you think of them and even include checklists and photos to keep track of what's important to you," she said. "Your notes are safely stored in Google Drive and synced to all your devices so you can always have them at hand."

[ Is there a reason to be cautious about Google services? Read Google To Close Reader In Product Purge. ]

It's not just for jotting or taking pictures. Google Keep can record audio notes, which it stores in Google Drive's new Keep directory. It can also share notes to services like Google+, Gmail, other email services and Twitter.

The Web version of Google Keep doesn't provide any sharing mechanism; it's more of a note gallery or file directory.

Google isn't exactly breaking new ground here, but it is catching up with Apple, which has been distributing a Notes app on iOS for years and last year began shipping a version of the app in OS X 10.8, for use in conjunction with iCloud. Google Keep will require a bit more work before it's competitive with Note taking apps like Evernote.

Google Keep is available for Android 4.0+ devices, though you'll need at least Android 4.2 to install and use the widget for taking notes through a screen lock. Stored notes can be viewed in Google Drive, at drive.google.com/keep.

Google may have launched the product prematurely. Attempting to access Google Keep through mobile Safari on an iPhone produced the message "Oops! An error occurred. Please click here to reload the page." Several people posting on Twitter made similar observations.

Although Keep's launch-day hiccups appear to have been resolved almost immediately, some users remain skeptical. Google's recent decision to shut down Google Reader later this year has not been forgotten.


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GBARRINGTON196
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GBARRINGTON196,
User Rank: Strategist
3/22/2013 | 5:26:02 PM
re: Google Keep Arrives, But For How Long?
That attitude is idiotic and juvenile. I have no particular love for Google, but if you look at all the stuff that has been cancelled or appears to be languishing while similar offerings are being transitioned to (like Picasa), are software titles that lie outside the business model that Google is now pursuing.

I shouldn't have to remind tech people (TECH people!) that high maintenance costs can keep a project from ever being profitable. And these 'stand-alone' projects don't benefit from shared code and maintenance efforts. In fact, they frequently tie up resources in that they create a need for little highly paid pockets of skill sets that rarely get fully utilized.

I asked, on another tech web site, if Google Reader was a candidate for conversion to Open Source. And the consensus of those responding was that the cost in effort and time to get such a project going would not be worth it. It seems there are plenty of open source projects already out there that require only minimal 'tweaking' in order to replace the functionality lost by Google's cancellation. A G-Reader Open Source project would likely get launched just in time to see their particular niche already filled by other projects.

So it seems that the 'disruption' so MANY are whining about will last between 1 to 6 months for most people.

And don't forget there is a huge economic incentive for independent developers to start thinking about how to deliver this set of functions and this is good for everyone now that Google has stopped using up all the RSS air in the room.

My advise is to stop whining, grow up, and start thinking about how you can make some money out of this situation.
jwillsn1l
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jwillsn1l,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/22/2013 | 12:31:13 AM
re: Google Keep Arrives, But For How Long?
iGoogle, Reader, Health.- 3 strikes and you're out.
Thanks but I'll "Keep" Evernote and worry about our commitment to GMail, Apps, and AppEngine.
Thomas Claburn
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Thomas Claburn,
User Rank: Author
3/21/2013 | 10:04:54 PM
re: Google Keep Arrives, But For How Long?
I'd back them up if I were you.
jc
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jc,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/21/2013 | 8:53:38 PM
re: Google Keep Arrives, But For How Long?
Perhaps Google Keep can keep handy the thousand or so RSS feeds I've accumulated over the years..
RobMark
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RobMark,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/21/2013 | 6:45:19 PM
re: Google Keep Arrives, But For How Long?
Google will not "Keep" it if it doesn't feed the ad revenue stream at a high enough level. So, I will not be investing time or effort into it until it looks like it does.
ANON1250009403608
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ANON1250009403608,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/21/2013 | 5:34:30 PM
re: Google Keep Arrives, But For How Long?
Umm, I seem to remember something called Google Notepad (browser based note taking not unlike the text part of Keep) which was shut down about 1 1/2 years ago.

My guess is that everyone will stick with Evernote or OneNote (I certainly am) and that Google Keep will be gone in a few years, like so many other useful services.

iGoogle, Reader and Calendar sync in the space of just a few months.
Ks2 Problema
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Ks2 Problema,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/21/2013 | 3:52:06 PM
re: Google Keep Arrives, But For How Long?
Google can be so smart. At times. Which is why they are often so very frustrating. They mix genius with self-sabotage and perhaps benign -- but certainly destructive -- neglect to a degree seldom seen in a company that has had such tremendous success. In some areas.

Trying to light a fire under Google to fix bugs and glaring problems with their vast array of often half-forgotten 'products' is often a fool's errand -- even, at times, with their flagship products.

They could be so good.
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