I thought I was in a dream when I opened my Google Reader account this morning. Instead of viewing the latest feeds from my favorite websites, a notification window was announcing Google Reader will shut down on July 1, 2013. According to the Google Reader Blog, usage of the online application “has declined”, and as a company (Google) they’re more interested in focusing their energy into “fewer products.”
I felt so sad that it will happen because I have been using the application since I started blogging in 2008. In fact I consider it a must have tool for every blogger and any person interested in watching websites without necessarily checking them.
The guys at Google surely reflected on the decision thoroughly because the consequences of Google Reader shutting down could be disastrous. Imagine you signed into the app and found it was no longer available. My God, what a shock! After realizing you may not even remember the exact url of a blog or a website to follow afresh, it is important to export all your Google reader data to use it elsewhere.
Exporting Google Reader data
Go to Google Takeout, a Data Liberation platform that makes leaving from Google products easy. In Google Takeout, you will choose to make an archive of your Google Reader data. It will be downloaded as an zip file that you can import in an alternative reader.
Preview of Google Takeout window showing list of services it supports. Click to enlarge.
The Official Google Blog has also announced the end of other products including Apps Script, Google Building Maker, Google Cloud Connect and Google Voice App for Blackberry just to name a few. Read the complete list.
It has happened before
Google is not at its first experience of closing services and applications on grounds to focus on the “new kind of computing environment” we live in. With the recently announced closures, a total of 70 features or services would have been closed since 2011.
To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often. – Winston Churchill
Happy continuation to Google and the developments to make even better products.