In a surprising retreat, Amazon.com
It's true that the site didn't gain a whole lot of traction. It was never going to make a dent in Google
A stripped-down version of A9 just isn't fun. Even when I followed the herd to Google for my searches, I still made it a point to check out A9 whenever I needed detailed BlockView snapshots of an unfamiliar establishment that I was driving to. There is nothing wrong with Google Maps, but BlockView allowed me to get a good look at the restaurant that I was going to that night.
The timing of the dismantling may sting. Even if the Amazon.com discount was meager, it would have come in handy as we head into the start of the holiday shopping season next month. A9 also provided search histories of logged-in users in far more detail than browser-stored data offers.
In its present form, A9 is now just another metacrawler-come-lately. It will scour Amazon's collection of books as well as results in Windows Live, Wikipedia, and Answers.com
If that's gone, there's no point in A9.com sticking around as a browser bookmark, either. Amazon, you made the decision to strip A9, but you might as well let it go.
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Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz has been shopping online for about as long as Amazon.com has been in business. He does not own shares in any of the companies in this story. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. T he Fool has a disclosure policy.