Google is pulling the plug on its failed Google+ social network, intended as a competitor to Facebook and Twitter, after it uncovered a data breach on the platform last year.
The closure is part of a broader spring-clean that sees the company doing away with services including a popular inbox organising app and its URL shortening service.
Google launched Google+ in 2011 as its fourth attempt at a social network, and aggressively pushed the service, integrating it with Gmail and from 2013 forcing YouTube users to use it to post comments on videos.
Those wishing to review apps on Google Play were also obliged at one point to sign up for a Google+ account.
But users found the interface confusing and the network used some unpopular policies, such as a strict “real name” rule that shut down accounts of those who used pseudonyms.
After Google+ founder Vic Gundotra left the company in 2014, Google began to separate the network from other services, running sucessful features such as Hangouts and Photos as standalone tools.