updated 04:15 pm EDT, Fri April 20, 2012
Google 'spring cleaning' targets mobile
Google on Friday detailed another round of sweeping consolidation that would drop even more of the servers it no longer considers vital. One Pass, its digital publication payment system, has been shuttered and its users transitioned to "other platforms." The implementation was intended to compete with Apple's own App Store publication rules and gave publishers as much as a 90 percent cut as well as access to subscriber details.
iOS is currently considered the dominant format for color digital magazines, both through the iPad's market share and through early support. Although Google's terms were more favorable than the 70 percent cut and voluntary-only subscriber data, the poor performance of Android tablets left it with an inherently smaller audience.
The Google Talk web app was also being shuttered, Google said. Phone users who wanted to use it now had to turn to one of the native mobile apps. BlackBerry owners were losing the ability to download the Google Sync app after June 1. While existing owners could keep using the app, newcomers would have to either use Google Apps Connector if they were enterprise users or rely directly on BlackBerry Internet Service.
Other changes would include removing the Picasa Web Albums Uploader for Mac as well as Picasa Web Albums Plugin for iPhoto. As with BlackBerry syncing, the software would work, but new downlaods would stop. Picasa 3.9 for Mac already has both features built-in.
Minor changes include dropping Google Related searches, the Flu Vaccine Finder, and Picasa for Linux.