Apple's Ping officially closes, disappears from within iTunes

The social network for music officially closes up shop today. Its users have had about a month to save anything important.

Josh Lowensohn Former Senior Writer
Josh Lowensohn joined CNET in 2006 and now covers Apple. Before that, Josh wrote about everything from new Web start-ups, to remote-controlled robots that watch your house. Prior to joining CNET, Josh covered breaking video game news, as well as reviewing game software. His current console favorite is the Xbox 360.
Josh Lowensohn
Ping is no more.
Ping is no more. Apple

Right on schedule, Apple has closed up shop on its failed music-meets-social networking experiment Ping.

The closure, which was quietly announced from within iTunes last month and slated for September 30, is simply a removal of the feature from within iTunes software, as well as the iTunes Store. Users who attempt to click on the link get an error message and are sent to the Apple Store home page.

Any playlists users made within Ping have been converted to iMixes, Apple's publishable playlist format. Meanwhile, Ping users lose their followers and people they were following with the closure.

An example of a Ping status update (click to enlarge).
An example of a Ping status update (click to enlarge). Apple

The feature let users post music tracks and albums to a feed to which other users could subscribe, and view from within iTunes on the desktop and iOS devices. Users could also simply post status updates to it, much like Twitter and Facebook.

The music-centric social network is largely considered one of Apple's missteps, and another blemish on its track record of various Web services. Put simply, it failed to catch on. Many artists instead flocked to Twitter and set up fan pages on Facebook. Apple has since embraced those two popular social networks in the latest versions of iOS, OS X and its own content stores. Users can tweet or post about apps, music and other digital items from those pieces of software.

The removal of the feature was noted earlier today by Macrumors.