No, not today — those of you using Drive, Search and Analytics can get down off that window ledge. But analysis of Google’s product history shows that more than a third of Google’s products end up being closed down.
The analysis was performed by Gwern.net, and looked over Google’s product portfolio to try to make sense of the many Google product closures. While many (myself included) aren’t terribly happy about the death of Reader, not too many were as fussed, by, say, Wave or Buzz. There’s some interesting suggested trends within the data; products Google buys in are less likely to make it than in-house products, and that March and September are times when Google products should be nervous, for example.
It’s an interesting read if you’ve got the time (and in some aspects, slightly beyond my own meagre skills in statistical analysis), but it’s also not entirely surprising, and that’s not a particular attack on Google. The Internet would be absolutely littered with the corpses of dead products if they all had to actually hang around; by being large and visible — and willing to launch lots of experimental products — Google is just a bit more visible than most.
Keeping to the Google Theme, I can’t let today’s excellent Google Doodle just pass away. Enjoy.
Sources: Gwern , Ars Technica