Google has shared a list of products deprecated over the last six months as part of the companies spring cleaning. “Making changes to products or services is hard, but we do need to maintain our focus if we are to do important things that matter in the world. As we continue our clean-up, we look forward to creating a simpler, more beautiful user experience across Google,” posted Matthias Schwab, Director, Cloud Services on the Official Google Blog.
Adding, “Focus is crucial if we are to improve our execution. We have so many opportunities in front of us that without hard choices we risk doing too much and not having the impact we strive for,” explained Schwab.
Here are the details on the changes:
- First, Google is making a number of API changes, adopting a one-year deprecation policy for certain APIs and removing the deprecation policy for others. Additionally, they’re retiring some old APIs with limited usage. Also updated the deprecation policy for all APIs to be much clearer and more concise.
“Most of these changes will happen over the next several years,” notes Adam Feldman, Product Manager. “During the remainder of the deprecation period, these APIs will also benefit from the clearer deprecation policy language. Our commitment to the underlying APIs remains unchanged. We’ll continue to work very hard to communicate any changes to our APIs well in advance, regardless of the APIs’ deprecation policy,” added Feldman.
The four services moving to a one-year policy are:
- Google Cloud Storage – keeps its current one-year policy
- Google App Engine
- Google Maps/Earth APIs
- YouTube API [Google App Engine, Google Maps/Earth APIs and YouTube API will wind down their current 3-year deprecation policy and will transition to the one-year policy in April 2014.]
Feldman says, they’ve shortened deprecation policy for the aforementioned APIs – simply stating that “we will strive to provide one year notice before making breaking changes.”
For Google’s other APIs, Google is removing the deprecation policy – for most, this change will not take effect until April 2015: Accounts API, AdSense Host API, Chart Tools API, Checkout API, Contacts API, Custom Search API, Documents API, Doubleclick for Publishers API, Feed API, Google Apps Admin APIs, Libraries API, Orkut API, Picasa Web Albums API, and Prediction API.
The following older APIs are now retiring:
- Moderator API and Legacy Portable Contacts API, as well as part of the Account Authentication APIs (ClientLogin, AuthSub and OAuth 1.0) and Google Chart Tools (Image Charts and Infographics).
- Also deprecating non-current versions of the Spreadsheets, Contacts, Documents List and Freebase APIs.
- Finally, adding a shutdown date for the Finance API and Feedburner Administrative APIs, deprecated last year.
- Google Flu Vaccine Finder is now retired, but has been passed to the HealthMap team as they launch HealthMap Flu Vaccine Finder.
- Google Related will be retiring over the next few weeks. Google Related is an experimental browsing assistant launched to help people find interesting and useful information while they browse the web.
- Google Sync for BlackBerry: Beginning June 1, 2012, Google ending support. Though, you’ll still be able to use it; however it’ll not be available for download after June 1. It’s advisable to switch to BlackBerry Internet Service (BIS) or the Google Apps Connector for BlackBerry Enterprise Server going forward.
- Google shutting down the Mobile web app for Google Talk. Users are recommend to use the native Google Talk app on Android or any XMPP-compliant apps on other mobile platforms.
- One Pass, payment platform for online news publishers, has been shut down. Google says they’re working with existing partners to make the transition from One Pass to other platforms, including Google Consumer Surveys.
- Google is also redirecting the old Patent Search homepage to google.com, that not only helping you to search the same set of U.S. patents with the advanced search options, but also loads twice as fast as the old Patent Search homepage, contributes to a unified search experience across Google, and sports Google Doodles as well.
- Google is deprecating its WINE-based version of Picasa for Linux that was launched in 2006, and will not be maintaining it moving forward.
- Finally, starting today, the Picasa Web Albums Uploader for Mac and Picasa Web Albums Plugin for iPhoto will no longer be available for download. “People can continue to use the uploader and plugin if they are installed. However, we’ll no longer maintain these tools,” Schwab concludes. Users are requested to download Picasa 3.9 for Mac going forward, which includes upload and iPhoto import features.