Three More Services Culled In Latest Round Of Google Closures

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Google Listen, Google Apps for Teams and Google Video for Business are latest victims of spring cleaning

The list of casualties of Google’s spring cleaning programme has grown after the search giant announced it is closing a few more of its less used services.

The latest cull claimed the scalps of Google Apps for Teams, Google Listen and Google Video for Business, while it will also close some of its 150 blogs.

“We work every day to create a more seamless, beautiful user experience—to give you a better, easier-to-use Google,” said Max Ibel, director of engineering at Google. “This means continuously improving the products we offer and recognising when users of one product might have a better experience with another.

“Over the past year, we’ve made changes to around 50 products, features and services – donating, merging and shutting things down so we can focus on the high-impact products that millions of people use, multiple times a day. Today, we’re announcing a few more changes.”

Google closures

Google Apps for Teams was first introduced in 2008 to allow people with verified email addresses from businesses or academic institutions to collaborate on Google Apps like Docs, Calendar and Talk, but the company said that over time it became apparent the product was not as useful as it anticipated.

Podcast search application Google Listen is another victim. It was launched through Google Labs in August 2009, but Google said the number of applications in the Google Play store rendered it irrelevant. Those who have it installed can still use it until 1 November and subscriptions can be exported through Google Reader.

Google Video for Business, which allowed Apps for Business and Apps for Education customers to use video for internal communication, has also been closed. All videos will be migrated to Google Drive this autumn, where they will be stored for free and exempt from storage quotas.

Last month, Google shut down another swathe of services, including personalised search homepage iGoogle, while it also closed many of the Meebo services it acquired in its takeover of the startup.

“Technology has the power to change people’s lives. But to make a difference, we need to carefully consider what to focus on, and make hard decisions about what we won’t pursue,” said Ibel. “This enables us to devote more time and resources giving you products you love, and making them better for you.”

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