Google+ was the first one to dark today. It was originally supposed to go dark in August, but after Google found a second API that was exposing user information, it decided to move that deadline up a full four months to April. The social media network was alive and kicking for a little over seven years, but the latter half of its life, it was holding on by a few strings.
Last year, Google announced that more than 90-percent of user sessions on Google+ were less than five seconds. Meaning that there weren't many people actually using Google+. Merely opening the site and immediately closing it.
When it comes to Inbox, it was also announced to be closing around the same time as Google+. But not for the same reasons. Inbox was an experimental email app by the Gmail team, that allowed Google to produce a more innovative email app. Many of the Inbox features have made its way over to Gmail over the years – although many have also not made the jump just yet.
For a lot of users, Inbox was not their email app of choice. This is because it changed how you interacted with emails, and how you saved them to use later on. Many tried Inbox, but preferred the Gmail app and went back. Which is perfectly fine. But the majority that did use Inbox have been pretty vocal about its demise. We knew that Inbox would be going away at some point, seeing as it was always billed as an experimental app. But even six months after its announcement, many are not ready to move on.
Luckily for Inbox users, Spark Email has launched on Android today, which brings a lot of the Inbox features over to Android. But that still doesn't replace Inbox, unfortunately.
Google routinely announces new products, and routinely kills some of its products. The Google graveyard is getting pretty large these days, with Google+ and Inbox being the newest residents. According to a website called The Google Cemetery, there are over 70 products that Google have killed over the years. And that list is only going to get longer.
Google+ was something we expected to get killed off a few years ago actually. After Google started neglecting it, and taking its engineers away to work on other products at the search giant. It was pretty clear that Google had given up on its latest social media ambitions. Though Inbox was a little more of a surprise. It did have many users actually using the app daily, most of which were in the tech industry.
For Google+, there is no replacement really. At least not yet. Which means most people are heading back to Facebook and Twitter. For Inbox, users will have to go back to Gmail and re-learn how to use that email service all over again. Seeing as it is vastly different from Gmail now.