Google's Shutdowns: Another App Bites the Dust

At the start of the year, Google released a timeline for the closure of the Google Hangouts messaging platform. This was in the midst of the closure of Google+ due to security problems. However, it’s not the first thing the tech giant has taken the axe too, with apps like Google Goggles, Bump! and Helpouts falling by the wayside too. Google Goggles, an image recognition app that was used for searches based on pictures taken by handheld devices, was officially discontinued on August 20, 2018 with its last update directing users to download Google Lens or Google Photos upon launching the app. Bump Technologies shut down the service and discontinued the app on January 31, 2014, after being acquired by Google for Google Photos and Android Camera, whereas Helpouts, an online collaboration service where users could share their expertise through live video, officially shut down on April 20, 2015, with Google stating that the service hadn't, "grown at the pace we had expected."

Google shutdowns infographic

Whilst the sheer volume of closures from Google is huge, it’s also an unlikely reminder of how bold the company is. They have regularly launched experimental products, only to kill them off later if they haven’t worked out. Although there have been plenty of fails, Google services and products continue to enrich the lives of pretty much everyone. Today, thanks to its more successful products and services, like Google Maps and Gmail, Google (under its parent company Alphabet) is worth hundreds of billions of dollars, making it one of the top American companies in existence.