Google has reminded its users that the flagship platform to allow anyone to create an Android app will permanently shut down at the end of the year.
App Inventor was an ambitious project that replaced complex app coding with an intuitive graphical user interface. It was fantastic in allowing anyone to create an app.
However, App Inventor never left beta form and many extensions of the project just never happened. For example, users were not able to publish their creations to the Android Market and there were severe limitations on how complex the app could be.
There seemed to not be enough interest for Google to work on these issues, so it decided to shut down App Inventor entirely.
In an e-mail sent to App Inventor account holders, the search giant wrote, "On December 31, 2011, after which data in appinventorbeta.com will not be accessible and will be deleted from Google servers."
However, the entire App Inventor source code will be released to the public, so anyone who's ambitious enough can pick up where Google left off.
It already has someone to take on that challenge. "In order to ensure the future success of App Inventor, Google has funded the establishment of a Center for Mobile Learning at the MIT Media Lab. Sometime in the first quarter of 2012, the Center plans to provide an App Inventor service for general public access, similar to the one Google is currently running," Google said.
Google warned users that they will need to download their App Inventor projects before December 31 if they want to continue working on them under the new open source code.