Why has Google Wave failed?

Google Wave was launched in 2009 as experimental service with lots of real-time interaction features. I think it’s important to really understand why it failed. For its time, it was very innovative. Still, it failed to meet the expectations of Google. Why? What was wrong with Wave?

Figuring this out is important, because as futuristic community building very innovative things we are almost predestined to run into the same problems that Google Wave ran into. So, we need to understand the potential pitfalls in order to be able to strategically avoid them.

What’s your theory why Google Wave failed?

eh. I can’t be bothered to properly ‘write up’ what we said in the hangout, but roughly, i think it’s because they wanted to merge the ideas into the existing web instead of starting from scratch with a completely new web/network. I could spend ages thinking/writing about wave, but I guess the time is better spent working on my solution :slightly_smiling:

It’s not only that Google Wave has failed, but also that its successor projects seemed to have failed getting a lot of attention, or users:

A common issue seems to be that those systems are very complicated and that their performance is not very good. User experience isn’t very smooth. There is too much freedom, and there are too many features. So, there’s a significant learning curve, which only few users are willing to go through, if they don’t see many of their friends already using the system actively. If the government or big corporations forced people to use Wave, people would probably learn to love it, apart from the performance issues, of course.