Instagram co-founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger, who launched AI-powered news aggregator app Artifact a year ago, on Saturday announced to wind down operations of the Artifact app.
The reason they cited was that the market opportunity was not big enough to “warrant continued investment”.
“It’s easy for startups to ignore this reality, but often making the tough call earlier is better for everyone involved. The biggest opportunity cost is time working on newer, bigger and better things that have the ability to reach many millions of people,” Systrom, who is the CEO of the app, said in a blog post.
Artifact app was recently named the “everyday essential app of the year” by the Google Play Store.
The company has decided to remove the ability to add new comments and posts.
“This type of content requires a fair amount of moderation and oversight and we will not have the staff going forward to support these features,” said the CEO.
The existing posts, however, will remain visible to users on their profile self-view. In the meantime, Artifact will continue to operate the core news reading capability through the end of February.
“We are at an existential moment where many publications are shutting down or struggling, local news has all but vanished, and larger publishers have fraught relationships with leading technology companies,” said Systrom.
“My hope is that technology can find ways to preserve, support and grow these institutions and that these institutions find ways of leveraging the scale that things like AI can provide,” he added.
The shutdown came amid a slowdown in the usage of other news aggregators, like SmartNews.
(With inputs from IANS)