Even Google is getting into the downsizing spirit. It just announced that it is killing Lively, its browser-based virtual worlds that could be embedded into other Websites. Lively launched just last July. The death notice on the site says it will shut down on December 31, so we are adding Lively to the deadpool.
Lively just never took off, and was extremely far afield for Google. A post on the Google Blog explains the decision:
. . . we want to ensure that we prioritize our resources and focus more on our core search, ads and apps business.
We should have known something was up when we noticed that it didn’t work with Google’s own browser, Chrome. It’s Google Website Trends chart says it all. After an initial spike, it flat-lined. Hype can only go so far.
Maybe Google didn’t kill Lively so much as mercifully pull the plug. This is a good sign actually that Google is willing to weed out non-performing products. What else is being cut at Google?
What else should be?