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Google to close down its URL shortening service

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Isaac Kaledzi
Isaac Kaledzi
Isaac Kaledzi is an experienced and award winning journalist from Ghana. He has worked for several media brands both in Ghana and on the International scene. Isaac Kaledzi is currently serving as an African Correspondent for DW.

Google announced that it will be closing down their URL shortening service, The company made the announcement through the Google Developers blog.

According to the statement, new and anonymous users won’t be able to create links through the console as of April 13th.

However existing users of the URL shortening service will be able to use it for another year, after which it will be completely shut down.

Michael Hermanto a software engineer for Firebase said that Google launched the URL shortener in 2009 and that since then, the ways in which people share information on the web has changed, while other URL shorteners have experienced an increase in popularity.

Hermanto noted that Google is refocusing its efforts by replacing it with Firebase Dynamic Links (FDL), which lets users redirect to specific locations in iOS, Android or web apps. Existing users of the shortening service will be able to create shortened URLs and export data from the console through March 30th, 2019.

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After March 30th, 2019, shortened links will continue to redirect to their destinations, but won’t be shifted over to the new Firebase console. For developers, starting May 30, 2018, projects that have accessed URL Shortener API’s before March 30th, 2018, can create short links.

The Google Developers blog recommended using FDL API’s to create new short links. FDL links will immediately detect the user’s platform and send the user to either the web or your app, as suitable.

The Google Developers blog statement called the URL shortener a great tool that they are proud to have built. However, as they look towards the future the potential of Firebase Dynamics Links, especially when it comes to dynamic platform detection and links that withstand the app installation process.



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