Google Products You Thought Would Never Die

Google Aardvark Logo

Proving that even the world’s best and most innovative companies have to do a bit of failing in order to discover what resonates with its audience, Google announced recently that it would killing at least nine different platforms and initiatives that had previously showed promise.

The cancellations include Google Aardvark, which had been described as Google as “an experiment in a new kind of search” that gave appropriate answers to users’ questions. Aardvark was acquired as a start-up in early 2010, but hadn’t panned out like Google had hoped.

Google Desktop is similarly being done away with – the official Google Blog cited a “huge shift” from local to cloud-based computing and storage. The reason given for discontinuing Google Desktop is that both online and offline instant access to information has been accomplished, though some are left wondering whether the program simply wasn’t popular enough with users to justify its existence.

Google Pack is also gone, and Google cites popularity with more web-based applications such as Google Docs as the reason. Google Pack had been aimed with downloadable software in mind, but Google is right to focus on a more web-based approach.

A very ambitious project known as SideWiki is also being shut down with the “fall cleaning.” While the attempt at collaborative results sounded like a good idea, the program simply didn’t resonate.

Be sure to visit the Google Blog to find what other projects and programs Google is discontinuing. While some elements of these innovations will live on in other programs, unfortunately many of these will be remembered as essentially failed projects.

Emory Rowland

I'm editor and keeper of the flame at Clickfire, fanatical social media blogger and builder of Internet things from way back. My love for social media and success with organic search led me to start my own consulting company. Apart from the Internet, I could be considered pretty worthless. More...


  1. Google produces more products that people are probably even aware of every year. Some work, some don’t. What’s great is that Google continues to learn from success and failure in order to continue to release products that are beneficial.

  2. Emory Rowland

    I view it as a sign of strength that Google is willing to let go of products like Desktop and Pack.

  3. Hi Emory, I missed two of these Google products – or should I say I won’t miss them :)
    I tried Aardvark for awhile but it wasn’t that useful for me.
    It seems like I find a new Google tool or a new function for an old one all the time. I just started using Calendars last week and found out that I can embed them into a blog widget. Who knew?!

    • Emory Rowland

      Ileane, How ironic is it that the first time I hear of Google Aardvark is the announcement of its discontinuation :)

      I didn’t know that Calendars was embedable.

  4. Stanman

    Google comes up with some great ideas. I think their +1 social networking website might give facebook some competition.

    • Emory Rowland

      I think we will know soon, Bro. They have a long way to go to catch Facebook, it would seem.

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