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In July 2008, Google Inc. had launched Google Lively, a virtual reality service to rival SecondLife. However, in November, just around 4 months after it’s release, Google announced its decision to shut down the service by the end of 2008. This showed Lively’s inability to stand out from the rest of the virtual reality crowd, which is led by Second Life, where people deploy animated alter egos known as ‘avatars’ to pursue digital fantasies and hence creating a second life.
“We’ve also always accepted that when you take these kinds of risks not every bet is going to pay off,” Google’s engineers wrote in a blog post.
Google concluded that it needed to focus more on its primary business (ie: Internet search and advertising) as Google’s revenue growth decelerated in the deteriorating economy.