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Google spring cleaning continues

Streamlining vs scattergun

Google’s latest spring clean continues the company’s drive to remain focused, ridding itself of defunct tools and combining those which serve similar purposes into single, stronger facilities.

Google has worked hard to maintain a streamlined approach since its inception 14 years ago, bringing favourable comparisons with other blue chip success stories such as Apple and Facebook, in direct contrast to the scattergun style of brands such as Microsoft and AOL. After getting started in autumn 2011, its latest spruce-up applies this philosophy not only to the brand’s visual aesthetic and navigational structure, but also to the breadth of its portfolio.

Below is a summary of the search giant’s latest attempts to reign in any superfluous activity:

DEFUNCT

Customised services: iGoogle (launched 2005)

Mobile: Symbian Search (launched 2008)

SUPERSEDED

Video: Google Video (launched 2005)

Communication: Google Talk Chatback (launched 2008)

Business search: Google Mini (launched 2005)

Swift evolution of the digital landscape

Matt Eichner, general manager of Global Enterprise Search at Google, said: “Closing products always involves tough choices, but we do think very hard about each decision and its implications for our users. Streamlining our services enables us to focus on creating beautiful technology that will improve people’s lives.”

It is interesting to note that most of the above features were created in 2005, before the introduction of the iPhone and mainstream use of Facebook, among other major developments.

This serves as a reminder of the swift rate at which the digital world changes. Innovations that are so ingrained in our lives today were only dreams a mere seven years ago – not only to us, but also to leading global businesses like Google.

Written by Liane Baddeley
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