Amazon Abandons Key A9 Search Functions

The A9 search engine's highly-touted street-level images and the ability to remember almost everything a user has ever searched for have been abandoned by Amazon, according to an Associated Press story. Amazon removed those capabilities—"along with several others"—late Friday, the AP report said. It quoted Amazon spokesman Drew Herdener as saying that Amazon is "shifting its priorities to areas where it can provide the greatest benefit for customers."

This is not good news. Amazon was pushing the HTML envelope on creative search techniques. When Amazon starts pushing and starts retreating, what does that say to the industry? On greater concern to many, what does it say to Google?