Google waves farewell to Google Wave
Google Wave is drawing to a close after failing to build a sufficient audience, it has been announced.
The web app was launched in California last summer with Google showcasing a raft of innovations such as character-by-character live typing, the ability to review all changes made throughout the history of a project and the opportunity to drag and drop files straight from the desktop. Web developers were initially keen to shower praise on the collaboration tool, which was arguably the most hyped technology product launch of 2009.
Much of the original buzz centred around the fact that users could only access Google Wave after receiving an invite from a fellow tester. This generated plenty of excitement among the technology community as developers tried to get invites from their friends, from Google Wave competitions or even from eBay. However, the novelty soon wore off and testers struggled to find practical applications for the tool, even after Google revoked the invite-only rule.
Urs Holsle, senior vice president of operations and Google fellow, has now signalled that the project is over. He said: "Wave has not seen the user adoption we would have liked. We don't plan to continue developing Wave as a standalone product, but we will maintain the site at least through the end of the year and extend the technology for use in other Google projects."
Google Wave is not the only launch to have fallen below expectations at the company. In May 2010, Google's vice president of engineering announced that its new e-commerce site would no longer sell the Nexus One handset after remaining a "niche channel for early adopters".