Ping bids farewell. Do you care?

By , Sep 30, 2012

With much fanfare, Apple launched Ping alongside iTunes 10 as a social network for music on September 1, 2010. Steve Jobs hailed it as being “sort of like Facebook and Twitter meet iTunes”. Despite signing up over a million users within the first 48 hours from launch, the experiment quickly went wrong.

The promised Facebook integration was pulled shortly after Ping was released, reportedly because Facebook wanted “onerous terms” that Apple could not agree to. Making good on Tim Cook’s promise, earlier this month Ping began alerting users it was no longer accepting new sign ups and would shut down Sunday, September 30.

Are you sad that Apple sent Ping to the technology graveyard?

The original press release billed Ping as “a new music-oriented social network for following your favorite artists and friends to discover what music they’re talking about, listening to and downloading”.

Ping let users post their thoughts and opinions on favorite albums and songs, view concert listings, tell friends which concerts they planned on attending and some such.

But Ping crashed and burned spectacularly.

As in the post-Jobs era Apple integrates with Facebook deeply at both the operating system and application level, it comes as little surprise that iTunes 11, which comes out in October, will integrate with Facebook (and Twitter), letting users easily like and share songs, apps and other pieces of content.

Here’s Jobs unveiling Ping and showing off short-lived Facebook integration.

An interesting nugget: Karsten Manufacturing, the parent company of golfing equipment vendor PING, announced shortly after Ping launched an agreement with Apple to give club Cupertino rights to use the Ping trademark in connection with iTunes.


iTunes 11, a major redesign focused on simplicity, is launching next month.

When you think of it, the lack of Facebook integration was the prime reason that Ping never caught on with the general public.

Facebook is the social network of our time.

To many folks Facebook is the timeline of their life.

As Facebook claims more and more of our social graph, any application or web service which strives to provide social aspects has no choice but integrate with Facebook.

You may like or dislike it (pun intended), but that’s the reality.

That being said, I’m not so sure that Ping’s demise is to be blamed completely on Facebook’s “onerous terms”, though admittedly it was a major part of it.

I’d say the truth is somewhere in the middle.


It didn’t help that celebrities like Lady Gaga created official Ping profiles

In a way, the thought of Apple pushing song discovery by taking advantage of Facebook probably did not sit well with Mark Zuckerberg, who admired Steve Jobs (the feeling was mutual) but nonetheless pursued other plans.

At the time, Zuck & Co. were busy building APIs that now enable any application to integrate with Facebook Timeline. So Facebook simply implemented a block which resulted in the inability to search for an iTunes user’s friends on Facebook who are also connected to Ping.

The Ping application on Facebook was also removed.


The Facebook Connect button had been live in Ping for barely 24 hours.

PC World later explained that the “onerous terms” Apple had mentioned related to fees high-traffic services like Ping are required to negotiate with Facebook in order to use the Facebook APIs, in accordance to Developer Principles and Policies.

Apple’s lead in the music space, combined with the company’s natural tendency to control all the aspects of its offerings and reluctance to give third-parties access to user data (Google Maps, anyone?), proved to great a hurdle to overcome for both Silicon Valley giants.


Joy of Tech‘s take on iTunes Ping

On a final note, I never bothered creating a Ping account.

To me, social networks are one of the greatest time-sucks of our time and I simply wasn’t willing to manage yet another social network profile.

These days, it’s just Facebook and Twitter for me: I’ve pretty much deleted all my accounts on other social networks that compete with the two.

We’re eager to learn how you feel about Ping’s retirement so we’re asking this straight question.

Are you sad to see Apple put Ping out of its misery?


I say good riddance.

As always, feel free to chime in with your thoughts in the comments right below.

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  • http://twitter.com/drewstone2 drewstone

    What the hell is Ping?! j/k, never used it or was interested in it.

  • Dlevi309

    at least they tried :/

  • Eric Armstrong

    Even Apple messes up some times.

  • seyss

    Ping, Siri, now Maps.. how many more Apple screw ups are there and are coming?

    • ic0dex

      Your life is a bigger screw up then Ping, Siri and Maps. A loser like you would only write something stupid like that. You name me a company that released something and everything worked 100%!

      • Joey_Mousepad

        *than

      • ic0dex

        I hate people like you! If you have something to say then say it. Don’t read through people’s posts and correct a letter in a word that they’ve missed. This is not a spelling competition.

      • Kurt

        i bet you read through you comment 2 or 3 times before sending it off. am i right or am i right?

      • ic0dex

        I proofread not like you, you just embarrassed yourself!

      • Kurt

        i’m not embarrassed

      • Infone

        LOUD NOISES!

      • Joey_Mousepad

        I just thought it was funny/ironic that you called the guy a loser and said his life was a screw up…while spelling something incorrectly

      • seyss

        Lol I guess I pissed the fanboys. Despite your hormones-boiling comment, Ping, Siri and Maps ARE fails. Or do you think people are conspiring against Apple?

      • ic0dex

        First off I’m no fanboy and again you’re wrong. Name me one cell phone company that has the same features and they work 100%… You can’t because there is no such thing as 100%. I hate people like you that talk out of their ass. Siri works better than anything out on the market. Maps works perfectly fine and will work much better in a year. Googles Map App on iOS does not come close to Maps. It was outdated. Ping, I can care less about but Apple did it, tried it and others couldn’t.

      • http://www.facebook.com/stephen.m.simon Stephen Michael Simon

        Agreed.

      • http://www.facebook.com/OmerOsman123 Omer Osman

        At least we don’t have anger problems ic0dex. SCREW OFF

      • seyss

        Still fail.

      • @dongiuj

        Others wouldn’t

      • Kurt

        “but but but but, siri is in beta! how can it be a fail!!!!” <—that will be the response from the isheep

      • http://twitter.com/therealjdizzle Jason Masters

        I know a company that everything was100% perfect

    • Bakersfield

      Siri nor Maps are actual screw ups.

      • @dongiuj

        You call maps a success?

      • http://twitter.com/nAcolz Acolz

        Did he call it a success? No! Now gtfo

      • @dongiuj

        What does “gtfo” mean? Don’t tell me you’re one of these people that live by anagrams/abbreviations and ends up with spelling problems and dyslexia?

      • http://twitter.com/therealjdizzle Jason Masters

        Omg ur so harsh lmfao chill bro ttyl rofl!!!

      • http://twitter.com/nAcolz Acolz

        Could you use google instead of asking so stupid question? Thanks

      • @dongiuj

        Is it really a stupid question if somebody doesn’t use these abbreviations? Is it really? あんたが本当にバカだよね!アホ!

      • http://twitter.com/nAcolz Acolz

        Many people use these, and by the way I don’t have spelling problems neither dyslexia. And English even isn’t my first language.

      • Bakersfield

        A success? No, Not yet, But a good first step in the right direction, By no means should it be considered a failure.

      • @dongiuj

        Tim Cook’s already apologised for it. If it’s not a screw up then why apologise?

      • Bakersfield

        Tim cook apologizing isn’t a admition to a failure, We all know and realize that it isn’t perfect yet, Tim Cooks apology was simply better for business then not addressing it at all, Cook also said that the more people that uses it the better it becomes.

      • @dongiuj

        It’ll be interesting to see if it really does improve to become good. Also to see if it will actually be any use around the world and not just in a few selected countries.

    • seyss

      Haha

      • Bakersfield

        You really have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about. Siri is no where near a fail, And Maps works to good to be a fail.

        Your comment is obviously just hate torwards Apple, Why don’t you stay off this site if you don’t care for Apple or its products?

      • @dongiuj

        Because that person has an opinion, just like youself.

      • http://twitter.com/therealjdizzle Jason Masters

        I concur with you and meself lol

      • Kurt

        go get a room

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1849765376 Jordan Rushing

    Spelling error, it’s “sad”, not “said”. Very good write up, however.

    • http://www.idownloadblog.com/author/dujkan Christian Zibreg

      Thanks, fixed the typo

      • http://www.facebook.com/jasondanielhead Jason Daniel Head

        Also in the 2nd paragraph you wrote “sing ups” not “sign ups”

      • http://www.idownloadblog.com/author/dujkan Christian Zibreg

        Fixed that, too :)

  • http://twitter.com/marcohowell1 Marcus Howell

    sent to the archive with MobileMe

  • http://www.facebook.com/ahmedfawzika Ahmed Fawzy

    I just upgraded
    to 6.0 last night and charged overnight….it is 2:20PM and I have 9%
    battery left without even touching my phone more than a few times today.
    I literally just watched the phone go from 15% to 9% in the last 10
    minutes

    • http://twitter.com/oneBurge Burge

      You can not blame Ping for that..

      • http://twitter.com/nAcolz Acolz

        Hey Burge do you post on reddit?

      • http://twitter.com/oneBurge Burge

        No..

      • http://twitter.com/therealjdizzle Jason Masters

        It’s pings fault let’s all blame ping for all our personal problems!

  • Carlos Briones

    I made a Ping account the first day it was released, and honestly I’ve never used it since. There’s very few (if any) things that Apple does wrong, but Ping was one of them. The idea itself is alright, but it didn’t turn out well.

    • MagicDrumSticks

      Very few if any things that Apple does wrong?

      Don’t make me laugh silly fanboy.

      • Carlos Briones

        How am I a fanboy? I can think of three things they’ve done wrong. Maps, Ping, and the antenna things on the first iPhone 4’s.

      • Kurt

        mobileMe…1 button mouse…find my friends…youtube apple/maps app (both crap since designed by apple)…shall i go on?

      • http://twitter.com/x_rus_x Vitaliy Anonymous

        Some people got some sticks up their asses. Instead of agreeing with the facts, they thumbs down the truthful comments(like yours)…..they’ll probably thumbs down this comment too.

      • Kurt

        I always give you thumbs up. You are always well deserving

      • http://twitter.com/Rich_Inniss  Rich 

        Well most of that stuff is true, the YouTube app, the licensing ran out, so they removed, and Google made the youtube app, since google owns youtube anyway, not apple. Can’t pin the new app sucking on apple. Maps will get better, Google Apps wasn’t perfect when first released. I’m not a fanboy, I like all Technology, I just think people are taking the whole Maps thing a little too far.

      • Kurt

        I haven’t used it. Have you? What do you think of maps?

        Just to correct you on little points. YouTube and maps from iPhone OS1-iOS 5.1.1 were made by apple not google. Which is why they weren’t updated much. Also, the license didn’t run out. They had another year or two. The article is on IDB. I’m sure this map fiasco will die down very soon as antenna ate didn’t last all that long. Although that situation was way worse. Unless maps brings out into a dangerous situation. Which is possible.

      • http://twitter.com/Rich_Inniss  Rich 

        Well my bad on the youTube License time frame. But might as well drop it if you’re trying to separate from them. Which have I used, the You Tube app? I don’t really watch many you tube videos in general, but I did download it. It’s like any You Tube app in my opinion. The Maps app isn’t terrible. Just depends on where you live. So far the very few places I navigated too, I made it there with no problem. Granted they were places I already knew how to get to, but it was accurate. The 3D part of the Maps app is done well, in certain areas. Yes the brooklyn bridge looks like it’s melting and terrible, but I mainly used the maps app for navigation. If I want to see tings, I can just use Google Earth, and normally thats on a computer. But I checked out the 3D mapping of NYC, and it looks really good, rendered better than the google map on my co-workers GS3. ( By the way, I personally think Samsung should be the only Android phone maker.)

    • http://twitter.com/Pitchy Pitchy

      Same. I signed up the first day. Added one of my friends who also signed up and we maybe did 2 things each on it. I leave a browser open constantly. I only open iTunes when absolutely necessary, so right then, it was a failure to me.

    • http://www.facebook.com/christopher.kindig Christopher Kindig

      well said Carlos.

  • Michael

    its sign up not sing up… or was that supposed to be a pun?

  • http://twitter.com/theuniverse934 THE UNIVERSE

    What’s ping?

  • http://twitter.com/v1ct0rrrr Victor Pera

    The machine that goes “Ping”…?

    • Emre SÜMENGEN

      ASL plz?!?

  • Sean

    Tried it the minute it came out! And.. that was about it.

  • GNexusPhone5

    Never tried it so i guess i won’t miss it. :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/jajidejumbo Justin Koopmann

    No

  • Nicolas Loots

    Bye Ping. We won’t miss you.

  • http://twitter.com/ahmad_sfeed ahmad_sfeed

    well i think its nice
    its like tweeter but not person

  • Alec Vanek

    can someone please tell me why someone would like ping?

    • Emre SÜMENGEN

      Ummm

  • http://twitter.com/Scott_Carter_ Scott Carter

    In a word……no

  • Mahjikk

    Yes, I am very said.

  • thedarkknight80

    Off subject ALERT :

    Downloading IOS 6 from itunes now to upgrade my “perfect” jailbroken 4S running 5.01 .

    I wanna do it but don’t wanna do it .
    I don’t wanna do it and but i wanna do it .

    Somebody stop me :(

    • http://twitter.com/nAcolz Acolz

      Don’t!!

  • AndyDontCare

    I care more about my toe nail clippings.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dietermarkus Markus Hudobnik

    I don’t think it was a matter of doing it wrong, it just didn’t turn it.

  • Kurt

    what took them so long to kill it?

    • @dongiuj

      Did apple make any money out of it? Sorry if that’s a stupid question, i never attempted to use it and had no interest in it.

      • http://twitter.com/SamuelWeinberg Sam Weinberg

        I don’t think directly. But when your friends are sharing what music they’re buying and listening to, it certainly doesn’t hurt sales.

      • @dongiuj

        Oh, right. Well i guess that explains why they didn’t kill it so quickly then.

      • Kurt

        apple doesn’t do free. steve was a big liberal. someone paid big. probably adverts

  • Falk M.

    Why didn’t they just partner with Last.fm back then LOL
    It has a solid user base, they are active and the service is excellent.

    Then again, they might have bought it and ruined it and then discontinued it, possibly even had made it iTunes-exclusive just like Ping (yea, very wise decision *eye roll*)… Maybe it’s better they didn’t :P

  • http://www.youtube.com/RocketSledder77 Michael Noriega

    Huh, what is ping, I am sorry iDownloadblog, did you mean Bing? Would you like me to search the web for “Ping”? :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/TillSchade Till Schade

    I never used Ping, anyway I am sad, that Apple has to shut down something! Apple just doesn’t do that! I thing that really stinks for Apple and it’s community!

  • http://twitter.com/jmarsh5 Justin Marshall

    They kind of wanted to be Spotify, except Spotify actually did it right. Because you can actually create a Spotify account with your Facebook profile, that is truly a music social network, without actually having to work hard to manage it. Just listen to music and your done.

  • f1ght3r

    don’t let the door hit you on the way out!

  • http://twitter.com/imperiumSG Andy M.

    i use to like it just to see music my friends find,

  • ChristopherMay

    Ping wouldn’t have happened if Jobs was around… Wait…

  • http://www.facebook.com/christopher.kindig Christopher Kindig

    nope.

    • Emre SÜMENGEN

      Dope