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Google Wave goodbye to outdated and unpopular services

Internet giant Google has announced it will cull a number of its less successful services, in what it calls an out-of-season spring clean.

A total of seven services are up for the chop, including Google Wave and Google Knol, as the company tries to streamline its services and cut back on costs.

Research projects are also for the chop, including Renewable Energy Cheaper than Coal (or RE<C for short), will also be ended.

In a statement released on Google’s blog, Urs Hölzle, Senior Vice President of Operations and Google Fellow, said: “We’re in the process of shutting a number of products which haven’t had the impact we’d hoped for, integrating others as features into our broader product efforts, and ending several which have shown us a different path forward.”

The search giant announced a year ago that Google Wave, a collaboration of email and instant messaging, would no longer be developed. Google have said that it will be shut down altogether in April 2012.

Google Knol, a Wikipedia-style service aimed at improving web content, will be scaled down over 2012 and completely turned off on 1 October.

Focus on Google Plus

Unpopular social software is also being phased out, as Google focuses its attention on its new social networking site Google+.

These include Google Bookmarks List, which allowed users to share bookmarks with friends, and Google Friends Connect, which gave webmasters the ability to add social features to their website.

Google Gears, the much-hyped software that aimed to achieve web browser functions while offline, is also being discontinued. Google say that its web browser Chrome offers plenty of offline functionality.

The final service being axed is Google Search Timeline, which allowed users to view a graph of historical query results, with Google saying this type of service is now provided on its search page.

Urs Hölzle added: “Overall, our aim is to build a simpler, more intuitive, truly beautiful Google user experience.”