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Google Translate API Deprecated! Will Shut Down On December 1, 2011!

google translate

As you all know Google has lots of product under its brand and many of them are already well known for you. To make it more user-friendly and widen their strength, Google started giving away API’s of those, so that anyone could use them anywhere and anytime.

Do you know how many Google API’s are available?

Google has got 91 API’s up and running.

But there are few API’s which are deprecated and just running on the older code without anymore update!

If you had attended Google I/O conference you would have got to hear about the some of the awesome upcoming products and 7 new API’s. Out of 34 announcements, 7 new API’s were,

  1. Discovery Service
  2. Tasks API
  3. Books API
  4. Pagespeed Online API
  5. Places API (now generally available)
  6. Prediction API (now generally available)
  7. Fusion Tables API (additional feeds)

As the list of API’s started growing day by day, Google started deprecating few of them which will not be receiving anymore updates! Google recently announced,

As the web evolves and priorities change, we sometimes deprecates APIs – that is, remove them from active development – to free up resources and concentrate on moving forward. Today we’re announcing a spring cleaning for some of our APIs.

One of the most important API which got deprecated in this processes is vast used Google Translate API!

google translate api deprecated

Google translate service was introduced in April 28, 2006 for the Arabic language. Prior to October 2007, for languages other than Arabic, Chinese and Russian, Google used a SYSTRAN based translator which is used by other translation services such as Babel Fish, AOL, and Yahoo.

On May 26, 2011, Google announced that the Google Translate API had been deprecated and that it would cease functioning on December 1, 2011 “due to the substantial economic burden caused by extensive abuse.”

The shutting down of the API, which is used by a number of websites, has led to criticism of Google and developers questioning the viability of using Google APIs in their products.

This shocking news made lot of buzz in past few days and everyone had different opinions. Some of the very interesting comments were,

  • Please find some way to keep the Google Translate API available, even if you have to make it rate limited like the Twitter API. I use it in one of my examples in a book that teaches Android programming (Hello, Android) and also in two apps on the Market. It will break a lot of apps if you shut it off completely.
  • As the lead developer for a non-profit who depends on the Translate API for two of the free “services” we offer, this is a shame… like someone else said, associate a cost with it, we’ll pay it, but just shutting it down altogether is bad!
  • At One Laptop per Child, we were hoping to hook into the Translate APIs to allow cross-language communication between school kids in different countries

A lot of developers are upset about the closure of the Translate API, probably for good reason. It looks like a lot of companies are depending on it, yet Google decided to shut it down despite the interest.

Well after reading these comments you would have got to know how important Google Translate API is for every different user!

But you can raise you voice and let Google hear about it! On May 28, 2011 a group of developers has decided to launch the action group “Don’t Shut down Google Translate API” asking Google to reconsider its decision.

Go ahead and like this Facebook page here.

Please do share your thoughts. As a developer this is really going to hurt us! How about you?

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