More Google Services Bite the Dust: Au Revoir Picnik!

If you thought Google’s killing spree ended in 2011, you are so wrong.  Imagine my surprise when I got an e-mail from Picnik, the online photo editing service Google bought in 2010, telling me that they’re shutting down in April.  I went to their site and lo and behold, there’s an announcement saying that April 19, 2012 would be Picnik’s last day.

I don’t really have a lot of files on Picnik, I just use it if I have free time and want to edit some photos, but what about those people who have thousands of photos there?  Will users have enough time to save them?

Here’s the e-mail I got from Picnik, it actually answers my question, so you’d better read on.

Official Announcement: Picnik is closing

Since joining Google in 2010, we have been creating editing magic in Google products while continuing to keep Picnik awesome. But now we get to focus on even awesomer things. Picnik will be closing on April 19, 2012.

Your photos liberated

Amazing photos are created in Picnik, so we have launched a new feature, Picnik Takeout, that easily downloads your photos to your desktop in convenient zip files. You may also elect to copy your photos to Google+where you can store and share your creations. You may request your photos at any time and use this handy tool as many times as you like until our closing date of April 19, 2012. Learn more.

Premium Refunds

To our primo Picnik Premium members, we’ll begin processing a full refund of your current membership fee within a week of this announcement. By “in full” we mean the whole darn thing. Yep, this means even if you are on your very last day of an annual membership, we will refund you the entire $24.95. Just because we want to say thanks.

Now the Good News – Free Premium for ALL!

To express our gratitude for your support over the past 5 years, Picnik Premium is free for everyone! Use Picnik in all of its premium glory, for free, from now until our actual closing day. Touch-up, Textures, Advanced, and more are all free for you to use!

We have been incredibly proud of building a product that is used and beloved by so many of you. We continue to be amazed and humbled by the photos you create and we are immensely grateful for all of your support, creativity, and passion.
We are excited by the photo-editing fun we have already brought to Google products, like Google+, where you can find many of your favorite Picnik effects in Creative Kit. We encourage you to visit Google+ and give it a whirl.
Please visit the Help Hub for more information on our wind down, and check the Picnik blog for updated information on our April closure.

It’s been awesome,
Team Picnik

Google luring new G+ users with Picnik tie-in?

Picnik isn’t totally going away, they’re just being incorporated into Google+, which is good news for G+ users, bad news for non-G+ users.  Could Google be using Picnik to lure more people into using G+?

Anyway, the best news about this is, and as stated above, is that Picnik Premium is FREE to use until they close (plus existing premium users get a refund)!  So, enjoy your photo editing frenzy while it lasts! ;)

Others dead-pooled

Aside from Picnik, Google is also shutting down/merging/open-sourcing the following services/products: Google Message Continuity (GMC), an email disaster recovery product for enterprise customers that use Google’s cloud to back up emails originally sent or received in an on-premise, Microsoft Exchange system so they could focus on Google Apps.  Data managing platform Needlebase will be shutdown on June 1, 2012.  Social Graph API, which makes information about public connections between people on the web, available for developers, will close on April 20, 2012.  No new sofware licenses for Urchin, the web analytics product which became the foundation of Google Analytics, will  be released after March 28, 2012.  Finally Sky Map, the Android app that uses GPS to show constellations in the night sky, will be open-sourced and will have deep collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University see further development as a series of student projects.