Google Fast Flip

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Google Fast Flip
Fast flip logo.png
Google Fast Flip screenshot.png
Screenshot of the Fast Flip homepage
Web address
Commercial? Yes
Type of site
Registration Not required
Available in English
Owner Google
Created by Google
Launched 14 September 2009[1]
Current status Discontinued

Google Fast Flip was an online news aggregator from Google Inc. that mimicked the experience of flicking through a newspaper or magazine, allowing visual search of stories in manner similar to microfiche.[2][3][4] It was launched in beta by Google Labs at the TechCrunch 50 conference in September 2009.[5][6][7]

The site presented images of stories from Google's news partners, which could be clicked on to navigate to the story on the news provider's own website.[7] Stories could be scrolled between using the mouse or cursor keys. The presentation of stories used a similar algorithm to Google News, but stories could be ordered by publication as well as by subject.[6] Krishna Bharat of Google News has said that "Fast Flip is mostly for longer shelf-life content, the kind of content you want to recommend to other people."[8] Fast Flip was created after Larry Page "asked why the web was not more like a magazine, allowing users to flip from screen to screen seamlessly."[4] Fast Flip was available as well on iPhone and Android mobile devices.[9]

Users of Fast Flip were able to follow friends and topics, find new content, and to create their own customized magazines around their searches.[10]

At launch, there were 39 mainly US-based news partners. Google said that it would share the majority of revenue from contextual adverts with its news partners.[7][8][11]

Fast Flip has been praised for allowing visual,[12] fast[13] and serendipitous[14] browsing of news stories, but it has been criticized as being a novelty,[15] anachronistic, as it emulates print media,[16] limits navigation and presents few news sources,[17] and as being more focused on the needs of publishers than of readers.[18][19][20] Its visual search has been compared to the beta visual search of Microsoft Bing[2][16][21] and to The Onion's microfiche iPhone app.[22] Fast Flip has also been cited as a demonstration of Google's power in the news marketplace; by setting up another news interface that uses publishers' content without returning much value.[23]

In September 2011, Google announced it would discontinue a number of its products, including Google Fast Flip.[24]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Bharat, Krishna (14 September 2009). "Read news fast with Google Fast Flip". The Official Google Blog (Google). Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  2. ^ a b "Bing and Google launch visual search". Daily Mirror (Mirror Group). 15 September 2009. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  3. ^ Boulton, Clint (15 September 2009). "Google Fast Flip is Geared to Generate More Ad Dollars". eWeek. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  4. ^ a b Shiels, Maggie (15 September 2009). "Google turns page on news content". BBC News. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  5. ^ Krazit, Tom (14 September 2009). "Google testing Fast Flip for Google News". CNet. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  6. ^ a b Bunz, Mercedes (15 September 2009). "Google's Fast Flip is for publishers". The Guardian. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  7. ^ a b c Allen, Katie (21 September 2009). "Google's mission to drive up newspaper revenue". The Guardian. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  8. ^ a b Johnson, Steve (14 September 2009). "Google news feature mimics print sources, lets people browse stories". San Jose Mercury News. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  9. ^ "Mobile Preview". Google Fast Flip. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  10. ^ "Google's Fast Flip Is Pretty Slick"[dead link] (25 September 2009).
  11. ^ "All Sources". Google Fast Flip. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  12. ^ Sherman, Erik (15 September 2009). "Google Fast Flip Becomes the News Stand, Pressure on Publishers". BNet. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  13. ^ Smith, Stevie (16 September 2009). "Google offers swift page perusal with Fast Flip". The Tech Herald. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  14. ^ Taylor, Catharine P (16 September 2009). "Google's Fast Flip and the Return of Serendipitous Surfing". BNet. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  15. ^ Cheng, Jacqui (15 September 2009). "Hands on: limitations of Google Fast Flip make it a novelty". Ars Technica. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  16. ^ a b Bradley, Tony (15 September 2009). "Google Fast Flip Bridges Digital and Print Media". PC World. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  17. ^ Merritt, Nick (21 September 2009). "Why Google's Fast Flip misses the point". TechRadar. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  18. ^ Hickins, Michael (16 September 2009). "New Google Service Nothing To Flip Over". InformationWeek. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  19. ^ Mick, Jason (16 September 2009). "Is Google's Fast Flip News Service a Stud or a Dud?". DailyTech. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  20. ^ Coursey, David (15 September 2009). "Is Google "Fast Flip" Really Just A Slow Slider?". Tech Inciter (PC World). Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  21. ^ Beaumont, Claudine (17 September 2009). "Microsoft Bing visual search takes fight to Google". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  22. ^ Arthur, Charles (16 September 2009). "The Onion Microfiche: all the satire that's fit to fit on your iPhone". The Guardian. Retrieved 21 September 2009. 
  23. ^ "Google Fast Flip". idiomag. 27 October 2009. Retrieved 28 October 2009. 
  24. ^ Alan Eustace (2 September 2011). "A fall spring-clean". Google. Retrieved 2 September 2011.