Every season, Google performs a bit of cleaning to keep its product line sleek and efficient. Each season comes with various products being killed off and it's become a tradition that I look forward to. Which of Google's products didn't make the cut for this winter's cleaning? Read on to find out.
As posted by Google on their blog:
Last January, we renewed our resolution to focus on creating beautiful, useful products that improve millions of people's lives every day. To make the most impact, we need to make some difficult decisions. So as 2012 comes to an end, here are some additional products, features and services we're closing:
- On January 4, 2013, we'll be shutting down several less popular Google Calendar features. You'll be unable to create new reservable times on your Calendar through Appointment slots, but existing Appointment slots will continue working for one year. In addition, we'll discontinue two Calendar Labs-Smart Rescheduler (we recommend Find a time view or Suggested times as alternatives) and Add gadget by URL. Finally, Check your calendar via sms and Create event via sms (GVENT)-U.S.-only features for creating and checking meetings by texting information to Google-will be discontinued today, as most users prefer mobile Calendar apps.
- Google Sync was designed to allow access to Google Mail, Calendar and Contacts via the Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync® protocol. With the recent launch of CardDAV, Google now offers similar access via IMAP, CalDAV and CardDAV, making it possible to build a seamless sync experience using open protocols. Starting January 30, 2013, consumers won't be able to set up new devices using Google Sync; however, existing Google Sync connections will continue to function. Google Sync will continue to be fully supported for Google Apps for Business, Government and Education. Users of those products are unaffected by this announcement.
- In addition to Google Sync, we're discontinuing Google Calendar Sync on December 14, 2012 and Google Sync for Nokia S60 on January 30, 2013. We're also ending service for SyncML, a contacts sync service used by a small number of older mobile devices on January 30, 2013.
- The Issue Tracker Data API allows client applications to view and update issues on Project Hosting on Google Code in the form of Google Data API feeds. We'll shut down the Issue Tracker API on June 14, 2013.
- Punchd is an app that keeps loyalty punch cards on your smartphone. On June 7, 2013, we will discontinue the Punchd Android and iOS apps, and merchants will no longer honor Punchd loyalty cards. Users can continue to earn punches and redeem rewards at participating businesses until June 7, 2013. We remained focused on developing products that help merchants and shoppers connect in new and useful ways.
Technology offers us a way to make a big impact on the world. In 2013, we'll keep working hard to build a seamless, amazing Google experience for you.