Google intends to shut down down 11 services. Venkat Panchapakesan, Google’s VP of Engineering, announced the decommission of these services in a recent blog post. While some of the services that are being discontinued are likely to be missed by somebody, none of the services have a particularly high value.
“…shut down the ability to create new time reservations through Calendar Appointment slots; discontinue Calendar Labs experiments Smart Rescheduler and add gadget by URL; and terminate two U.S.-only features: Check your calendar via SMS, and Create Event via SMS.”
As cloud computing matures, many of the services that felt like a good idea in 2008 will find themselves on the chopping block in 2013. Cloud providers, such as Google, have to normalize the number of features and services offered in order to focus on the ones that bring the most value to the user.
The problem comes in when enterprises bind applications to these services. When the services go away, the applications must be modified and retested. I would not consider any of the services that Google is doing away with as mission critical. However, as clouds mature, count on more important services ending up in the trashcan for business reasons, and some pretty miffed cloud developers as a result.