The End Of The Road For Google Buzz?

Since its highly controversial release back in February of 2010, Google Buzz has failed to attract a fair share of positive spotlight. In fact, besides Buzz’s deep Gmail and Maps integration, the service doesn’t really bring anything truly unique to the table. For the social service to really gain traction, it would need to bring users something that they just “had to have.” The sad fact is, Buzz didn’t.

Privacy concerns weren’t the only issue. Buzz, according to some, was doomed to fail from the start. Twitter had become too large a force to be reckoned with, and perhaps Google bit off more than it could chew.

Regardless of how you or I feel, Google Buzz is still found in millions of users Gmail accounts, and, I’m sure, sees a decent amount of chatter. So why do I think Google Buzz is about to bite the dust? The thought dawned on me during today’s demonstration of the new web store version of the Android Market. Below is what I saw. Take a look and see if you catch it too.

In order to make the new Market more social and exposed to the masses, Google has taken the initiative of integrating a “Tweet” button so user can effortlessly share their favorite apps with both friends and foes. Being that Google made both the Android Market and Buzz, wouldn’t you think there would have at least been a “Buzz” button as well? Nope. Completely absent.

To me, this can only mean one thing. Buzz is failing and Google has given up. I’m not saying with unwavering certainty that Google Buzz will soon join the ranks of products like Wave, but I do feel it to be the only logical explanation for its absence in the new Android Market.

There. I said it. Let’s see what the community thinks of my observation. Anyone care to prove me wrong?

  • SomeWhiteGuy

    I was thinking that Google was going to integrate Buzz with more products as well, but was left sorely disappointed. Things like Wave and Buzz had so much potential, but wasn’t completely thought out before release.

    Imagine what both of those products would have been like if not released as BETA products and finely tuned before hitting the rest of the world. Releasing all their stuff in BETA worked for Maps and Gmail because everything was new and interesting. Now we need more refined products to catch our attention, and Google hasn’t learned that yet.

    But it’s interesting, because they have only learned that with their web products, and not their mobile platforms. They still do release a BETA version of the mobile platform, but it takes a while before a full version hits and is updated.

  • Yup I thought exactly the same thing.

  • Brian Ward

    Ha! I would not have caught that. I think you are right.

  • Facebook is not listed there either, so when are they shutting down?

    Maybe you missed it yesterday when Latitude Check Ins were released, but in order to share publicly you need a Buzz account for that service, seems like a Buzz investment. I really wish you tech bloggers would knock this “Buzz is dead” crap off already. Some people love it, other people seem to be hell bent on proclaiming it dead. It’s gained plenty of traction in and around my circle and that’s just fine with me. Also, with the amount of time the Buzz Team puts into answering questions on Buzz and acting on feedback, I’d be comfortable saying Buzz isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.

    • chris

      right, i feel like they will just use this for now, and add more social sites later. and its kinda hard for buzz to fail because it is connected to other site that bring the post count up.

  • Brett Gibson

    I’ve noticed a ramping up of Google taking to twitter to get messages out. you would think they would use Buzz more to get to their users. obviously not.

  • Chuck

    Google has been intermittent in including Buzz as a sharing option ever since its launch last year. It was given a fairly high profile, for example, on the Google’s recent Demo Slam site. And just last week, Google Reader comments were more closely integrated with Buzz comments, so it’s not that no work is being done on it.

    Its being left off of the web-based market, while certainly not good for Buzz, isn’t anything new and doesn’t have any significant meaning. It’s just a continuation of Google’s sort of half-assed promotion of Buzz in its other properties. Probably due to the size of Google and the fact that the various teams work fairly independently of each other.

    • Benjamin Rubenstein

      I hear the point about teams working independently of each other, but this is the easiest possible form of integration. Anyone can put a “Buzz” button on a website. It’s definitely easier for them than putting a “Tweet” one. I’m gonna have to respectfully disagree with you. This is too big of a omission to be ignored. The social aspect of the new Market is a huuuuuge deal. Google wouldn’t overlook it so haphazardly.

      • Chuck

        Well, my point is they *have* been overlooking Buzz haphazardly since nearly the moment Buzz launched. So they would.

        I’m not bullish on Buzz’s prospects going forward, and wouldn’t be surprised to see it shuttered this year, but I just don’t see a reason to think its being left out of the web Market is particularly meaningful.

  • I caught this also and tweeted it as soon as I saw it:!/jblossom/status/32871343280103424

    On the other hand, it could be that there are other things in store for Buzz. What’s clear, though, is that Google is working much more closely with Twitter in recent weeks. I wouldn’t rule out an acquisition even now.

  • Usman

    They teamed up with Twitter to help the Egyptians get information around Mubarak’s ban on the internet… this isn’t surprising.

  • Well, I certainly hope Buzz doesn’t go anywhere. I much prefer it to Twitter or Facebook.

    F.Y.I, Google just announced check-ins with google maps & latitude, and that integrates with Buzz.

    • Benjamin Rubenstein

      True. But Buzz is already tied into Maps, so that’s not really anything new.

  • Slightly off-topic, but it doesn’t make much sense to compare Buzz to Twitter.
    Buzz didn’t get critical mass [yet], but it’s an application of a higher class. Everything you can do in Twitter you also can do in Buzz. Real discussions possible (and occur all the time) on Buzz only. Twitter is too narrow, it’s mostly a way to share links and advertise your stuff.

    • DaveC

      I disagree. I routinely block people on Twitter who do nothing but share links or advertise; however, my timeline is full of interesting interactions with many folks that have become sort of e-family members. Buzz is Twitter on steroids–I just think it’s late to the party.

  • Agree with your points Re Twitter being to big.

    In my neck of the woods here in the UK on searching for ‘Buzzes’ there wasn’t an awful amount of them.

  • Well… i never used google buzz… but i use it every day… controversial? Maybe… but true. Google buzz has become for some time nothing more than a google reader reader (?). I do use google reader social features ALOT… but many of my friends never touched gReader. With buzz i`m constantly feeding them information and everyone is happy… it`s just another way to comment on gReader items…

  • Electricjoshua

    It is just a hasty launch of the Android market for the cloud. It is a work in progress. Likely they will add buzz and share on facebook, linked in and other options too. By your logic next step is google buying twitter.

  • iquanyin

    can you guys put a “follow us on buzz” button alongside the others? i’d like to read you in buzz…(and yeah, its oronic, given the topic.)

  • There is also no Facebook button. Does that mean Facebook is also failing? Does Google know something we don’t know?

    • Benjamin Rubenstein

      No offense, but that’s not the brightest of responses. Facebook aligns itself with Microsoft, who Google is in direct competition with. And one has nothing to do with the other. Buzz is a Google product. It should be integrated regardless of which other services are also used. I fail to see your logic.

  • Hal

    Buzz aggregates other services as well, therefor if you have a twitter button but use Buzz, it will still show up in your lifestream.