Google gave its Wave social networking and collaboration service the kiss of death on Wednesday only a year after its introduction. The service failed to gain traction like the Internet search giant had hoped, and the company’s efforts to explain just what the service was left most users confused.
“Wave has not seen the user adoption we would have liked,” commented Google Senior Vice President of Operations, Urs Holzle. “We don’t plan to continue developing Wave as a standalone product, but we will maintain the site at least through the end of the year and extend the technology for use in other Google projects.”
The idea behind Google Wave was to give users a way to collaborate on projects, participate in discussions and share information in their Web browser. The implementation, however, left most people wondering what they were supposed to do once they set up their Google Wave account.
Since Google is working on a way for users to get their data out of Wave, the people that did manage to find a way to make the service work for them won’t loose what they’ve created.
Mr. Holzle said Google Wave “set a high bar for what was possible in a web browser.” It didn’t, however, catch on with end users.