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Blogger and Picassa to Be Retired by Google

Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Blogger and Picassa to Be Retired by Google

Posted on: July 6th, 2011 by Access Computer Technology

Ben Parr, writing for Mashable, explains that Google will retired its acquisitions of Blogger and Picassa and roll those features into Google+:

Say goodbye to the Picasa and Blogger names: Google intends to retire several non-Google name brands and rename them as Google products, Mashable has learned.

The move is part of a larger effort to unify its brand for the public launch of Google+, the search giant’s social initiative.

Blogger and Picasa aren’t going away, of course — they’re two of Google’s most popular products. Instead, according to two sources familiar with the matter, Google intends to rename Picasa “Google Photos” and Blogger will become “Google Blogs.” Several other Google brands are likely to be affected, though our sources made it clear that YouTube would not be rebranded. The technology giant shut down Google Video, its failed web video service, in May.

The move isn’t without precedent; Google acquired JotSpot in 2006 and rebranded it as Google Sites in 2008. In 2007, Google acquired VOIP platform GrandCentral and relaunched it as Google Voice in 2009

Picasa and Blogger were also Google acquisitions, although both companies have been part of the Google empire for far longer. Picasa was acquired in 2004 and Blogger (co-founded by Evan Williams of Twitter) was acquired in 2003 and is one of the top 10 most visited websites in the world. Although the rebranding could upset some existing customers, it also gives Google the ability to completely integrate both services into Google+.

The transition from Picasa and Blogger to Google Photos and Google Blogs will occur “in a month to a month and a half,” we’ve been told. The date aligns with the likely public launch of Google+. Mashable has been told to expect the public debut of Google+ on or before July 31. The date is important because it’s the day all private Google Profiles will be deleted.

We believe Google doesn’t want to have private profiles after the public Google+ launch. Instead, the company is likely to encourage users who want more privacy to use Circles to curate their friend groups.

The brand unification effort will be the largest in company history — it’s never renamed a property as large as Blogger. The popular blog creation service has been receiving a lot of extra love recently. In March, Google announced that Blogger would receive a major overhaul. We doubt many people expected that the overhaul would include a rebranding, though.

Google+ makes perfect sense for Blogger and Picasa — they are both social products that improve as more people use them. It’s important to note that Google+ already has a photos feature, a product that we believe utilizes Picasa technology. It’s also important to note that Google+’s photo feature has no Picasa branding of any kind.

We’ve reached out to Google for comment but have not yet heard back.

Should Google Bring Google+ Out of Invite Only Stage?

Posted on: July 6th, 2011 by Access Computer Technology

When it comes to rolling out the next killer app, beta testing is one thing. There are many apps that remain in beta for a while until the company can iron out all the kinks and be notified of the bugs. Google’s Gmail was in beta for years. But Google’s process of rolling out new apps with invitations doesn’t work.

Remember when you needed an invite to get Google Wave? People were excited about Google Wave until they received their invite and saw what a failure it was. Now, Google is requiring an invite to be part of Google+. It’s a bad process. They should open it up to everyone, but keep it in beta.

PC Magazine’s Lance Ulanoff agrees. He writes, “Google+ will not become the social network it wants to be until Google lets everybody in. Open the doors, Google. Take the heat. It’s going to take some time to reach three quarters of a billion users. Google+ is only a week old, but I’m now on record demanding that the search engine giant open this remarkably polished social-networking playground to the masses.”

Continue reading Lance’s article here.

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