Digital and Social Media insights from an overenthusiastic student.

Another Google+ Review…

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After a two month blogging hiatus, there’s probably not a better subject to return to writing about than Google+, the latest Social Networking tool proposed by the Search Engine giant.

Having finally got myself an invite to the beta version today, I have been able to navigate around the platform, add friends to my ‘Circles’ and post updates. After viewing an article on Mashable about the Pro’s and Con’s of Google+, it’s easy to see why these likes and dislikes have been selected by a number of people.

It’s true, the user interface of G+ is fantastic, simple to navigate around and find what you’re looking for. I also really love Circles; being able to put different friends in different groups and tailor your updates for certain circles only solves previous issues of what personal updates you don’t want prospective employers or colleagues to see. ‘Sparks’ is also a great idea, being able to list various interests and monitor news about them is a useful addition, although a problem I have encountered so far is ‘Football’ contains news on what some may call ‘Soccer’, but also American Football, which can be annoying. I have yet to use the ‘Hangout’ feature for video calling, but an interesting comparison could be between that and Facebook’s new video service, released last week in partnership with Skype.

One thing I would personally like to see is increased integration with other Social Networks, Such as Twitter, Foursquare, LinkedIn etc, but perhaps this will be a later addition once Google+ is fully launched. Given that many people see plus as Google’s rival service to Facebook, it’s unlikely that a Facebook integration feature will be developed.

Although at present there is no easy way to share your personal profile URL with others, the website Gplus.to allows you to create an easy-to-share URL once you have acquired your Google+ ID.

Can it become the “new Facebook” ? Only time will tell, but this is definitely Google’s strongest offering in Social Networking.

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4 responses

  1. Google+=meh

    I have yet to warm to the idea of Google +. Circle is a good idea but FB also did the same thing with lists. The problem with the idea is people might fit into several circles and I just CBAd thinking which one of my work buddies is also safe to add to my general friends circles. Because it’s gone mostly ignored I don’t think the majority of people will ever expand their circles beyond the basic ones Google starts you off with. Because of that their potential will go unnoticed by the masses.

    Hangouts…whatever. I’m not a fan of video chatting anyway usually because when someone wants to video chat I’m sat on the couch in my pants and I look exactly the same way as when I got out of bed. So no I don’t want people to see me on video chat.

    Maybe Google will work it out and really impress me but for now I kinda wish they would just give up so we could stop talking about it.

    July 11, 2011 at 1:55 pm

    • I see what you mean about lists, but that is more more chat than anything, and I don’t think it’s that easy to use. I think expanding your circles beyond what you have already been given may be too much effort for some of the lazier users, I agree. Hangouts can be useful but yes I do take your point about not wanting to broadcast yourself at all times, maybe it’s more useful in a professional sense?

      Thanks for commenting!

      July 11, 2011 at 2:17 pm

  2. James Barber

    Completely agree that circles is a brilliant solution to the issue of who can see your updates. and the usability of drag and dropping people to various groups is a great feature. The thing I am most impressed with is ‘hangouts’, Facebook’s fairly weak Skype video chat just doesn’t compare to the group video chatting.

    Also, I believe there is plenty of room for three major social networks and don’t really think they need to try and compete as it were, why can’t people use all three? people may take preference to one of either Facebook or Google+ but Twitter is definitely safe in my opinion. Would you not be willing to use Facebook and Google+?

    July 11, 2011 at 2:11 pm

    • I see your point, I don’t believe that 3 networks is too much for people to use, I think the comparison lies more between Facebook and Google wanting to be the market leader and thus at present, are unwilling to co-operate. The only thing that may cause a split decision between using two networks would be their similarity, if Google+ and Facebook become too similar, it may force people to only use one, and that’s why I feel twitter is so successful as its very different. Personally, I’d definitely be willing to use both!

      Thanks for reading & commenting

      July 11, 2011 at 2:20 pm

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