OMGChrome reports that Google has released a new “Save to Google” Chrome extension which looks like it is intended to be a Pocket or Instapaper competitor.
The official Chrome Web Store description for the browser bolt-in puts it thusly:
Easily save interesting webpages to Google with the new Save to Google extension.
One-click save: Click the star to save webpages for later viewing. Easily navigate your saves via an intuitive visual UI.
One spot for webpages and Images: Your saved webpages and saved images from Google Image Search will live together at google.com/save.
That certainly sounds like an alternative to Pocket, but in reality it falls far short.
I tested the service and can report that “Save to Google” doesn’t snag a copy of the article; it creates a bookmark. There’s no option to read the article you’ve saved; instead you are taken to the original page. In spite of the confusing name, this is less a save-for-later service than an uber-bookmarking service where you can bookmark a link and then tag it, edit the description, and organize the links into folders and groups.
That’s great, but it’s really only about half of the features promised by the name and description, making this only about half as useful as the competition.
And frankly, I’m not surprised. There was a time where Google could release a product like Gmail, Chrome, or Google Reader and absolutely trounce the competition. Sadly, as we saw with Chrome’s distraction-free reading mode last year and now the new “Save to Google” service, that time is long past.
Have you tried the service yet? Is it any good?