W ith the launch of its more successful Google+ social networking service, Google on Friday said it plans to shut down Buzz. Google Buzz launched in February 2010 as a way to share status updates, photos, videos, and links with friends through Gmail. The secret sauce was a “page rank” algorithm that determined which status updates should be featured prominently and which ones should be collapsed. Google Buzz also mined users’ Gmail contacts and set users up to automatically follow the people they e-mailed most.
Google is also killing Jaiku, a Twitter-like service it acquired in 2007. Its iGoogle social-networking feature will disappear on January 15. On the same date, Code Search, designed to help users find open-source code on the Web, will also shut down.
“We think the time has come for us to focus our energy on projects that will have the most impact to the most users,” Horowitz wrote. “With the majority of Buzz users now here on Google+, it became obvious that all of our attention should be focused on this community.”