Google removed the video link from the main homepage of their search engine. As you know, most of the links to google's services are not consistent throughout the Google experience so you will not notice this everywhere yet, but clearly they are working on making it less visible to users. You can still find the video link inside the "more" menu.
If you recall, back in August 06, Google changed their Froogle product search link from "Froogle" to "Products" and the link to this service, was replaced with the Video link. Guess they have changed their mind once again. However, much has changed since August of 2006.
Why did Google do this?
- Universal Search Results - Google launched "Universal Search" system that blends listings from its news, video, images, local and book search engines among those it gathers from crawling web pages. In fact, if you do a search for "umbrella", you will see that the first 2 results in Google are videos from youtube. You can even play the videos directly from the search results page.
- YouTube - As traffic studies show, Youtube is the number one site for traffic when it comes to online video and video searching. The name Youtube has such great awareness that many users go directly to Youtube first to search for videos.
- Google Video is Stale - The Google Video homepage itself, which changed from a video upload site to more of a meta video search engine, has undergone relatively no updates and i is rather unattractive. We know from others that the Google Video product manager Jennifer Feikin left the company in May this year.
- Holiday $$ = some have hypothesized that this has to do with Google trying to push products for the holiday season.