A spring cleaning initiative that started last fall to ‘improve the overall Google experience,’ has led the Mountain View-based giant to carryout various changes to its products and services, most of which have been shut down permanently. The total ‘death’ count till date is said to be near the 60 mark and these numbers are likely to rise over the next few months.
First on the list of changes is Google storage which will be the same for Picasa and Drive. This means that users will have 5GB of free hoarding capacity on both services. However, those who have opted for paid memory will not receive the additional free storage. For instance, a 100GB plan will continue to have the same amount even after the changes are carried out. Come December 3, the AdSense for Feeds feature will be closed completely. The company will start to retire it from October 2, 2012.
With the Social Reports feature in Google Analytics being widely adopted by webmasters to keep track of social activity on their pages including +1’s, the +1 Reports from Webmaster Tools is soon to be discontinued. The service will be put to a complete halt on November 14, while the company will continue to roll out improvements to the former tool.
Another service to be replaced by a ‘much better’ alternative is Places Directory for Android. This app has been pulled off the Play store and the website is soon to hit a dead end as well. The main purpose behind this change is that Google Maps for Mobile is capable of providing the same information through an enhanced experience.
Starting October 15, the Google News Badges and Recommended Sections will be put on halt, while Insights for Search has been merged within the revamped Google Trends. Other services scheduled to shut down include Spreadsheet Gadgets and Classic Plus.
So what’s the main purpose behind this spring cleaning? The answer to that is relatively simple – the company’s goal is to deliver a ‘simple experience when using Google.’