前两天还在抱怨好久没什么更新呢, 结果今天就关了. 互联网上好多的好的服务真是可惜, 各种死法, 服务太好成本太高垮掉, 大公司调整产品砍掉, 小公司被卖掉后产品被砍掉, 当然还有一种可能就是会被墙掉.
Brian Shih, Former Google Reader Product ManagerLet’s be clear that this has nothing to do with revenue vs operating costs. Reader never made money directly (though you could maybe attribute some of Feedburner and AdSense for Feeds usage to it), and it wan’t the goal of the product.
Reader has been fighting for approval/survival at Google since long before I was a PM for the product. I’m pretty sure Reader was threatened with de-staffing at least three times before it actually happened. It was often for some reason related to social:
- 2008 – let’s pull the team off to build OpenSocial
- 2009 – let’s pull the team off to build Buzz
- 2010 – let’s pull the team off to build Google+
It turns out they decided to kill it anyway in 2010, even though most of the engineers opted against joining G+. Ironically, I think the reason Google always wanted to pull the Reader team off to build these other social products was that the Reader team actually understood social (and tried a lot of experiments over the years that informed the larger social features at the company). Reader’s social features also evolved very organically in response to users, instead of being designed top-down like some of Google’s other efforts.
I suspect that it survived for some time after being put into maintenance because they believed it could still be a useful source of content into G+. Reader users were always voracious consumers of content, and many of them filtered and shared a great deal of it.
But after switching the sharing features over to G+ (the so called “share-pocalypse”) along with the redesigned UI, my guess is that usage just started to fall – particularly around sharing. I know that my sharing basically stopped completely once the redesign happened . Though Google did ultimately fix a lot of the UI issues, the sharing (and therefore content going into G+) would never recover.
So with dwindling usefulness to G+, (likely) dwindling or flattening usage due to being in maintenance, and Google’s big drive to focus in the last couple of years, what choice was there but to kill the product?
Personally, I think that there is still a lot of value a service like Reader could provide — particularly in a world with increasing information overload coming us from many different sources. But Reader at Google was pigeonholed as an RSS-reader explicitly, and didn’t have a chance to grow beyond that to explore that space. But that’s neither here nor there.
 See Reader’s friends implementations v1, v2, and v3, comments, privacy controls, and sharing features. Actually wait, you can’t see those anymore, since they were all ripped out.
 Reader redesign: Terrible decision, or worst decision? I was a lot angrier then than I am now — now I’m just sad.
真的好可惜啊, 还有这么多用户呢. 也开始对各种云产品更加不放心. 现在disk这么便宜, 好歹maintenance mode可以搞上很多年嘛, 干脆搞个snapshot也行啊.
暂时还没有打算找替代品, 好歹还能用到7月1号, 这段时间里应该会有很多替代品出现吧. 不知道有没有办法把我所有follow的blog所有过去的文章倒出来, 很多朋友的blog都没有了.