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Google Inc. (GOOG) Shuts Down Reader Service by July 1

Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) – a top-five stock play among hedge funds we track – announced Wednesday that it is continuing its streamlining – or as CEO Larry Page said in 2011, “putting more wood behind fewer arrows” – as it is claiming its latest victim. This one, however, does not start with the word “Motorola.” Is it possible that the big fans of this service could have Read the tea leaves and saw this coming?

Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) announced this week that its eight-year-old Google Reader service, which compiled all the news headlines on the Web for users according to their preferences and interests and had quite a passionate – if not exceptionally large – following, will be shut down as of July 1. At one point since its launch in 2005, it was the most popular service to compile volumes of news and information sites, including news sites and blogs.

Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG)Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) wrote at the time of the Google Reader launch, “The amount of information on the Web is rapidly increasing,” Google said the day of the site’s launch. “Google Reader helps you keep up with it all by organizing and managing all the content you’re interested in. Instead of continuously checking your favorite sites for updates, you can let Google Reader do it for you.”

At the time of its launch, Google Reader was a state-of-the-art service for information wonks, who before Reader likely would have had to look at several Web sites and bogs to get all the news they wanted. But Reader was developed to allow users to select the news and opinion topics that they were interested in, and Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) would use its vast search engine capability to track down Web stories all over the world and compile in one neat litle place. However, that segment has been populated in recent years with services like Flipboard and Zite among others.

What do you think? Were you a Google Reader user? What are you thoughts about one of the pioneer services for the company shutting down? Give us your thoughs in the comments section below.

DISCLOSURE: I own no positions in any stock mentioned.

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