Google announced this week that it’s pulling the plug on two services: Google Podcasts and the Basic HTML version of Gmail (which lets you read your email like it’s 2004).

While some folks may have preferred the classic Gmail experience for its simple, lightweight design, Google says users have had more than a decade to get used to the “modern successors” to that view. As for Google Podcasts? Google is pushing users to migrate to YouTube Music, which already supports podcasts.

Google Podcasts

That makes Google the latest company trying to squeeze podcasts and music together into some sort of mega “audio” app. Want to listen to podcasts using Amazon’s official app? Then you’ll want to fire up Amazon Music. How about Spotify? Yeah, it’s all in one app there too (along with audiobooks).

I get why Spotify is doing it: the company wants to capture more of your listening time in its flagship app. But Google hasn’t been a one-app-fits-everything company since expanding beyond its original search engine business. And Amazon… don’t ask me what strategy Amazon has, if any.

Anyway, pour two out for the latest entries in the Google Graveyard.

Here’s a roundup of recent tech news from around the web.

Creating a centralized podcast destination on YouTube Music [YouTube / Google]

Google Podcasts will shut down in 2024, and Google is pushing podcasters and users to move to YouTube Music instead, which already supports podcasts. Migration tools are on the way, and podcasts don’t need to be hosted on YouTube to be available.

Google killing Basic HTML version of Gmail In January 2024 [The Register]

Google is pulling the plug on the Basic HTML version of Gmail. The stripped down version of Google’s email service will go away in January, 2024. It hasn’t been updated in years and doesn’t support all the latest features, but that’s why some people still use it.

Weekly GNU-like Mobile Linux Update [LinMOB]

GNOME 45, unofficial Ubuntu Touch update for the PinePhone, and more.

PiWrite [GitHub]

PiWrite is open source software that turns an Amazon Kindle into an E Ink writing device (via a Raspberry Pi Zero W paired with a Bluetooth keyboard and set up as a web server you can access with the Kindle browser).

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  1. Anyone serious about podcasting should really look at the decentralised, open source nature of Podcasting2.0 and value for value (e.g. Lighting Network). IPFS could prove quite handy for reducing infrastructure cost!

  2. IMHO, moving podcasts to YouTube frees Google from maintaining an app, while reinforcing the branding on YouTube as the canonical media aggregation site. Back end services are likely similar, and YouTube can leverage its existing processes for audio advertising. Some mid-level exec is patting themselves on the back for a win-win cost cutting measure.