UPDATE 1-Google to shut Reader web feed application, users vent

Thu Mar 14, 2013 8:00am EDT
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* App to be retired on July 1

* Google cites lack of usage, shifting company focus for closure

* Company to shut seven other services

By Sayantani Ghosh

March 14 (Reuters) - Google Inc said it will shut Google Reader on July 1, citing declining usage for the application that aggregates content served by web feeds, as it forges ahead with its strategy to focus on fewer products that have more impact.

Google Reader was launched in 2005 to make it easy for people to discover websites of interest and keep tabs on them.

Google said there were "two simple reasons" for closing the service. "Usage of Google Reader has declined, and as a company we are pouring all of our energy into fewer products," the company said on its official blog on Wednesday.

Users of the doomed app took to Twitter to vent about the closing of the service, making "Google Reader" one of the top trending topics on the microblogging site.

"Shutdown of Google Reader because of a 'lack of consumer appeal?' No way. The simple reason: RSS can't be controlled and monetized easily," one Twitter user wrote.   Continued...