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[dupe] List of dead Google products, services, and devices (killedbygoogle.com)
61 points by deathtrader666 11 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 31 comments

"killed" implies it ceased to exist, so I think it's misleading to include rebrandings or relaunches where functionality gets folded into another product.

At a glance...

* Nexus wasn't killed, it was re branded into Pixel. Nexus had been trending toward premium and the Pixel switch cemented that.

* Googles was more-or-less replaced by Lens. Not a pure rebrand, but two products with the same idea.

* Google Now has essentially been folded into the expanding behemoth that is Assistant. I don't care for that kind of feature, but AFAICT they're fairly similar.

* Quickoffice was an acquisition that was promptly folded into Docs/Sheets/etc.

Nexus was never “premium”. Quite the opposite it was developed-oriented and amazingly affordable. Unsubsidized it cost around 50% of what other flagship phones cost. Pixel changed that by effectively doubling the price.

Given the quality issues google had with Nexus phones (which was real), I could absolutely not justify spending twice the money on fake premium phones which seemingly still suffered those issue, based on reports after the Pixel 1 launch.

My Nexus 6s cost me $649. Nearly the same price of the latest iPhone at the time. How does that square with "amazingly affordable"?

That was the last and also most expensive Nexus of them all. Definitely not representable.

In comparison my Nexus 5X (launched at the same time) cost me around $350. I could literally have bought two of these instead of one iPhone (or Samsung Galaxy).

Pixel is entirely manufactured by Google, Nexus was entirely manufactured by Android Vendors under Google Supervision after they designed most of it.

Building products/features and then killing them when they don't work is generally fine. And renaming/merging/consolidating them isn't really killing them. But…

> Sparrow was an email client for OS X and iOS. They acquired and then killed it. It was over 1 year old.

Buying then killing is sad. Acquihire I guess?

> Google Reader was a RSS/Atom feed aggregator. It was over 7 years old.

These are the ones that feel like they hurt the internet. That was seven critical years for RSS/Atom. Investing time/money in building feed aggregators/readers meant competing against the might of Google and a $0 price point.

Lots of acquihire indeed. And in the case of sparrow and a lot of others, it was a secret. So one could wonder who is to blame; Google for acquihiring companies to fulfil hiring needs, or those companies that accept to get acquihired depiste having a (sometime) successful product that people are paying for.

I can't edit. I meant "it was NOT a secret".

"Dumping" is illegal for physical products (https://wikipedia.org/wiki/Dumping_(pricing_policy), but that's usually for under-cost pricing in foreign markets, not for killing a market.

The list is very long. I really wish a rebranding or renaming or merging of services was somehow listed or displayed separately. This would give a better idea of the services actually killed.

Most of these haven't been killed but just rebranded

Why does this keep resurfacing? Yes, Google tries some things out, they make value assessments and move forward with what they believe will benefit them. It seems the general consensus is that Google 'hates' or 'doesn't care' about its users when it cancels a project/product.

Sometimes even with almost unlimited resources (Windows phone) the plan just doesn't work out. I don't get why the tech community in general likes to harp on them for it.

Because they call the entire community to invest themself hard in their new baby, but don't want to do the same commitment themself.

By the way killing products and thus accepting failure is usually necessary for innovation.

I just finished Peter Druker's classic "The Effective Executive" and he really strongly emphasizes the need to throw out the old:

"The first rule for the concentration of executive efforts is to slough off the past that has ceased to be productive. Effective executives periodically review their work programs—and those of their associates—and ask: 'If we did not already do this, would we go into it now?' And unless the answer is an unconditional 'Yes,' they drop the activity or curtail it sharply."

Drucker, Peter F.. The Effective Executive (Harperbusiness Essentials) (p. 115).

So how many instant messaging solutions does Google need to kill to land at one which works, and how much innovation have that gotten them compared to the competition (which surprise, surprise is not repeatedly killing their own IM-platform).

I'm still bitter about the Google Inbox death. It's been my favorite iOS Gmail client by far.

> Google Allo is an instant messaging mobile app by Google. It will be rebranded as Google Chat.

Does not sound like it was killed if it will continue to live with a new name.

I dony see what the issue is they are doing technical debt right.

The ones that worry me are aws, their technical debt would be hugggee with all those services and they keep piling it on, now maintaining their own elastic search repo!

Eventually some of the older service have to give and with there lock-in not lock-in it will hurt some -just a thought

I think when they killed Google Reader is when I realised that I don't want to count on Google any more.

Google+ and goo.gl are currently being archived by the ArchiveTeam, goo.gl as part of the URLTeam and G+ in a dedicated project. My warrior already uploaded over 100GB of content and in total the project has saved 149TB of data from google's endless thirst for killing things.

In a somewhat disingenuous site, the webmaster left out the granddaddy of them all: Google Search[0]

[0] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=19387010

This reads more like a dedication to R&D than a list of shame.

I understand why / how people are pissed, I got pissed at some of those too, yet I do also accept my overall quality of digital life is improved by these bold moves in the long run.

Google Wave was a lot of fun back on the day, they were just experimenting with real-time editing that ended up in Docs, but it sure led to some crazy conversations :)

In cases where there's no merging with another product, what happens to the codebase, assuming it's not open-sourced?

Google has a giant monolithic code repo with over 2 billion lines of code. It's really amazing.

> Most of Google’s code is stored in a single unified source-code repository, and is accessible to all software engineers at Google . There are some notable exceptions, particularly the two large open-source projects Chrome and Android, which use separate open-source repositories, and some high-value or security-critical pieces of code for which read access is locked down more tightly. But most Google projects share the same repository. As of January 2015, this 86 terabyte repository contained a billion files, including over 9 million source code files containing a total of 2 billion lines of source code , with a history of 35 million commits and a change rate of 40 thousand commits per work day [18].


Probably they just delete the directory or whatever, but it's still inside the VCS history.

rm -rf <productname>

Jokes aside, I am also curious about this. I could imagine them splitting it up and reusing the useful functionality in other products?

Pretty sure most of it gets deleted. Every piece of existing code needs some sort of occasional maintenance to remain functional or useful.

Still use Google Desktop today. It is much, much, much better than Windows search in term of speed and functionalities.

This was an really unexpected loooong list!

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