Google has announced that it will be closing its incredibly useful Google Reader service on July 1st 2013, cutting off millions of users.
Launched in 2005, Google Reader made it easy for users to keep track of updates across multiple websites via RSS feeds, and it’s something we use every day.
Although we know that RSS usage has declined over the years, we have to say we’re bitterly disappointed with Google’s decision to terminate the service altogether, and it’s a service we really will miss.
Here’s how Google announced the bad news:
We launched Google Reader in 2005 in an effort to make it easy for people to discover and keep tabs on their favorite websites. While the product has a loyal following, over the years usage has declined. So, on July 1, 2013, we will retire Google Reader. Users and developers interested in RSS alternatives can export their data, including their subscriptions, with Google Takeout over the course of the next four months.
Google insist that the ‘idea of Reader lives on’ with graphic-heavy apps like Google Currents, but it’s the simple interface of GReader that we’re going to miss.
CNet has posted up five alternative products, but we can’t see anything that’s going to be as useful as Reader.
We’re seriously annoyed at Google over this – why offer products only to pull the rug from under our feet later on?
For what it’s worth, this petition has been set up: Google: Do not remove Google Reader on July 1, 2013. We’ve signed it anyway.