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12/14/2012
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Google Shuts Down 11 Services

Google continues to weed out less popular products in order to "put more wood behind fewer arrows."

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As 2012 winds down, Google is shutting down more of its services, this time calling the closures "winter cleaning" rather than the usual "spring cleaning."

Venkat Panchapakesan, VP of engineering, said in a blog post that difficult decisions are necessary for Google to maximize its impact.

Eleven services are being discontinued, although few are likely to be widely missed -- none of these offerings have a particularly high profile.

Five affect Google Calendar. On Jan. 4, 2013, Google plans to:

-- shut down the ability to create new time reservations through Calendar Appointment slots;
-- discontinue Calendar Labs experiments Smart Rescheduler and Add gadget by URL; and
-- terminate two U.S.-only features: Check your calendar via SMS, and Create Event via SMS.

[ One area Google intends not to neglect is its tablet line. Read Google Nexus 4 Ships In 4 To 9 Weeks. ]

Google also is putting Google Sync out to pasture as of Jan. 30, 2013, because it has been superseded by other open protocols, specifically IMAP, CalDAV and CardDAV. However, this applies only to users of Google's free services. Google Sync will remain in place for Google Apps for business, government and education customers.

Google Calendar Sync availability ended Friday, Dec. 14. Google Sync for Nokia S60 gets the boot on Jan. 30, 2013, along with a little-used contact sync service for older devices, known as SyncML.

A mechanism for viewing and updating Project Hosting issues in Google Code, the Issue Tracker API, will be mothballed on June 14, 2013.

Punchd, a loyalty rewards app for Android and iOS, is being shut down on June 7, 2013. Those with Punchd rewards can redeem them until that date.

Google's product purge began when company co-founder Larry Page became CEO in 2011. He subsequently described the goal of the initiative as an effort to "put more wood behind fewer arrows."

The last such shutdown was announced in September. Since the closures began, Google has shut down around 70 services.

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AustinIT
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AustinIT,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/18/2012 | 7:11:12 PM
re: Google Shuts Down 11 Services
Larry Page stole that expression from Scott McNealy who stole it from...
AustinIT
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AustinIT,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/18/2012 | 7:10:15 PM
re: Google Shuts Down 11 Services
Well, you've been Scroogled Dave. Everyone knows that Google's Office products are just playthings compared to a REAL professional platform like Microsoft Office365.

Just saying...
doesnt matter
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doesnt matter,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/18/2012 | 10:44:44 AM
re: Google Shuts Down 11 Services
interesting choice of words "put more wood behind fewer arrows." ... doesn't sound like they would fly well.
David Berlind
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David Berlind,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/18/2012 | 12:51:08 AM
re: Google Shuts Down 11 Services
Interesting to see all the Calendar synch stuff being sunsetted. One form of synch that no one seems to be able to do well is synching reminders and cleared-reminders between mobile and desktop. When I clear a reminder from my desktop, I shouldn't pick up my mobile only to find it stills sitting there. Sometimes, I don't look at my mobile or my tablet for a while. Picking them up only to find a ton of reminders that I cleared hours ago on another device is pretty frustrating.
PrefAnon
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PrefAnon,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/17/2012 | 5:23:17 PM
re: Google Shuts Down 11 Services
If they shut down Issue Tracker API, shouldn't they be rehauling Google Code too? It was a nice product, then it just kinda languished. Now everyone seems to be moving back to either sourceforge or github...
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