Artifact

, a news app co-founded by

Instagram

‘s

Kevin Systrom

and

Mike Krieger

, is going to shut down less than a year after its launch. The app’s primary feature of news reading will be available online until February, but commenting and posting capabilities will be removed immediately.
The app used

AI

to suggest news items to users, but it failed to gain enough traction, thus the company has decided to “wind down operations.” The company says that it worked tirelessly to build a “great product,” which is loved by its “core” users.

However, the shutdown comes as the market opportunity is not big enough that it should continue investing in the app.
“We’ve made the decision to wind down operations of the Artifact app. We launched a year ago and since then we’ve been working tirelessly to build a great product. We have built something that a core group of users love, but we have concluded that the market opportunity isn’t big enough to warrant continued investment in this way,” writes Artifact co-founder Kevin

Systrom

in the blog, announcing the shutdown.
The app will gradually disable certain features, such as commenting and posting, since it needs “a fair amount of moderation and oversight,” and Artifact does not have the staff to support that. Existing posts will remain visible for the time being, and Artifact will continue to operate its “core news capability” until the end of February.

Systrom notes that many startups fail to acknowledge market reality, but “making the tough call earlier is better for everyone involved.” He further adds that he’s excited to continue building new things, but he did not say what’s next for him. We live in an exciting time where artificial intelligence is changing just about everything we touch, and the opportunities for new ideas seem limitless,” he said.
The team of eight people who were working on Artifact, developing the app, will be disbanded and “will go [their] separate ways.”