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Google provides a huge array of products and services, many of which we use daily. Even as fans of iPhones and iPads, there are some things that Google does better – Gmail, Google Maps, and Google Photos are excellent services worth a second look if you’re still using their default Apple equivalents.
That said, not everything Google makes is a hit, and this week it has killed off no fewer than four of its creations. Firstly, Android fans will no longer be able to purchase the Pixel 2 smartphone, with the Pixel 3 having taken its place at the end of last year.
More relevant to iOS users is the fact that Google is removing its Inbox app, which has long been an alternative to both the iOS Mail app and the regular Gmail app. Google likes competing against itself with multiple products that do the same thing, and in this case, it looks like Gmail beat Inbox. (Good thing, too, as it was our favorite of the two.)
The biggest news – but something we’ve been expecting since last year – is that the failed social media experiment Google+ has finally shut down. There was a time when it looked like Google+ could compete with Facebook, but the site never really took off and has been more associated with business correspondence in recent years. An enterprise version of the site will live on in a limited capacity. Last year’s data breach was the straw that broke the network’s back, and Google made the decision to put Google+ out of its misery.
Finally, Google is shutting down its long-running URL shortening service, goo.gl, used to convert lengthy, hard-to-remember website addresses into short and snappy strings that redirect to the original page. Its usage has dropped since the rise of bit.ly for the same purpose, and it looks as though Google no longer wishes to maintain its own version.