In August of 2009, Google introduced a new collaboration service called Google Wave with some mystery and a lot of hype. Initially, there was quite a bit of interest in it, but over time, it was obvious to Google that it wasn’t going to be a popular service. I tried Wave a few times, and even though I thought it was pretty cool, my biggest problem with it was that it was sluggish and simply didn’t offer a good replacement for simple email and social networking, as in Facebook. A year after the introduction, Google finally announced that the Wave project was getting killed. Later, it was announced that Wave was going to end up as an open source project hosted by the Apache Foundation. Wave did have a lot of great features for collaboration, and the move to open source was welcomed by many.
Yesterday, I received an email from the Wave team which details the final funeral arrangements for Google Wave. Here’s that email in full:
More than a year ago, we announced that Google Wave would no longer be developed as a separate product. At the time, we committed to maintaining the site at least through to the end of 2010. Today, we are sharing the specific dates for ending this maintenance period and shutting down Wave. As of January 31, 2012, all waves will be read-only, and the Wave service will be turned off on April 30, 2012. You will be able to continue exporting individual waves using the existing PDF export feature until the Google Wave service is turned off. We encourage you to export any important data before April 30, 2012.
If you would like to continue using Wave, there are a number of open source projects, including Apache Wave There is also an open source project called Walkaround that includes an experimental feature that lets you import all your Waves from Google. This feature will also work until the Wave service is turned off on April 30, 2012. For more details, please see our help center.
The Wave Team
If you want to check it out, you can join me on Google Plus and add me to one of your circles.