Wow - disappointing, Google needs more UE folks on staff.
For a company that's so good at Search, they have a really bad time at separating the wheat from the chaff. Lots of cool ideas in Wave. Lots of great demos, but they never made it to the production systems.
I think Google doesn't understand that while they can afford to wait for something to hit, developers will do something and if it doesn't strike gold, they can't wait for the market to develop.
Google is on fire in the development world, so I don't think this will have a significant deleterious effect, but it may make developers hesitant to invest time in Wave-like initiatives at an early stage.
A bit surprised but not much. Wave was a neat technology demo but.. have you heard anyone react like "Oh crap what will I migrate XXX to now!" Nope. Because nobody was really using it for anything important. And I still never quite figured out what the point of wave was - apart from of course.. being the "next big thing". Did anyone really believe it would replace email?
Integrating some of the features from wave into gmail (Especially if they wrapped it into google apps/docs) would probably work quite well for companies using it.
I don't think it'll harm them; it's just another indication (as if it were needed) that they're not some superhuman company and they have flops like everyone else. Google Catalog.. Google Answers.. Google Video (They bought youtube). Google Checkout.. pretty dead except for buying android apps. Nexus 1 sales model! Google Buzz PR fiasco..
Of course that's not a bad thing.. there are always going to be failures.. and they're doing extremely well.
If they hadn't made this announcement would you even have thought about Wave this month?
I admit to fooling around with Wave and never quite figuring out what I'd use it for. But I have tremendous appreciation for Google's fearless willingness to put something like Wave out there with full hype and support. And then I have equal respect for them pulling the plug and deciding to go another way -- presumably incorporating some of its features into other tools. Both decisions took guts, and they and we all learn from both.
I think one of the problems with Wave is that they launched it twice and had to invalidate much of the work that happened the first time. There were a lot of cool wave robots that existed for the first version that wern't available when I got to use wave. I was very disappointed.
If some of the bots had been available for easy use, then I suspect it would have gotten a bit more traction. I liked parts of it, and others were really confusing.