Google didn’t grow to be the biggest tech company in the world by releasing only successful products and services. In fact, many of their projects end up failing, only to be sent down the gutter later on. It is important to know when to move on, and Google has decided to discontinue some services that are no longer necessary or simply aren’t worth the effort anymore.
Today’s flurry of discontinued services includes Google Listen. For those unrelated to the subject, Google Listen is an Android application that allows users to search for, and listen to podcasts. The app was very clean and simple back then, but now there are many options available in the Google Play Store. Making this application no longer relevant, in Google’s eyes.
This comes to prove that while Google does compete against other apps and services in the Play Store, it can also move aside for third-party developers when the time is right. After all, other developers can sometimes do a better job.
With a bit of melancholy, we must say that this is one of the apps that was no longer being used. We have many other good options, and Google’s focus is simply more necessary in other departments. Those that have the app can continue to use it, but the search function will be disabled starting November 1st. So get ready to eventually let go. But just out of curiosity, what app/product/service do you use for finding and listening to podcasts?
For those interested in the other discontinued services, simply read on for Google’s explanations. These happen to be unrelated to Android, but the news might still be of interest to you.
We introduced Google Apps for Teams in 2008 to allow people with a verified business or school email address to collaborate using non-email applications from Google like Google Docs, Google Calendar and Google Talk. Over time, we realized that Google Apps for Teams was not as useful for people as we originally anticipated. Beginning September 4, 2012, we’ll start converting existing Google Apps for Teams accounts into personal Google Accounts, and shutting down Google Apps for Teams. This change does not affect other editions of Google Apps.
We launched Google Listen through Google Labs in August 2009, to give people a way to discover and listen to podcasts. However, with Google Play, people now have access to a wider variety of podcast apps, so we’ve discontinued Listen. People who have already installed the app can still use it, but after November 1, podcast search won’t function. You can access your podcast subscriptions in Google Reader in the “Listen Subscriptions” folder and download them from the Import/Export tab.
Google Video for Business is a video hosting and sharing solution that allowed Google Apps for Business and Google Apps for Education customers to use video for internal communication. Starting this fall, we’ll migrate all videos hosted on Google Video for Business over to Google Drive, which has similar storage and sharing capabilities. All migrated videos will be stored for free and will not count against a user’s Google Drive storage quota.
Finally, Google maintains 150+ blogs and other communications channels about our products and services, and so over time we’ll also be closing a number of Google-created blogs that are either updated infrequently, or are redundant with other blogs. This doesn’t mean that we’ll be sharing any less information—we’ll just be posting our updates on our more popular channels.