It’s all over the Internet today and almost every major news site picked up the story about Google+ services which are now in limited invite only and going to perhaps become the next big “social sharing experience” online.
Google has literally defined how we search for information but they are very late to how we share that information with others. This is their attempt to become the best at sharing even if they weren’t the leader at it.
So what does Google+ entail?
First you can watch a video overview by Google about the Google+ project
[youtube width=”550″ height=”343″]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xwnJ5Bl4kLI[/youtube]
Probably one of the biggest and most popular offerings is Circles which basically addresses the problem of sharing too much information with too many people. With Circles you organize all people in your social groups into “circles” or categories and then when you share information it only gets shared to those “circles”.
Facebook is still extremely restricted to sharing information with friends, friends of friends, everyone or other set by predetermined groups. However it is easy to forget to click on who to share your latest wall post with and which group to restrict it to.
Hangouts may make it easier for people to just get together and chat in online real time conversations and communications. Hangouts I see being a potential excellent resource for bloggers who want to just engage their readers and peers in real time for questions/answer sessions or even topic ideas. This reminds me of Facebook “events” where a moderator sits on a page answering questions but may be better, time will tell.
Google Instant Upload
Forget having to take a picture with your mobile device and click to share it on Twitter or Facebook manually. With Instant Upload your pic will save to your Google+ cloud environment the moment you snap the picture so you don’t have to take another step to upload it. It defaults to your private Google+ cloud space so the 90% bad blurry pictures all don’t get shared.
Another interesting concept is that you share what you are reading or like and you will get recommendations on stuff you may like. I am curious how it will come up with these algorithms to try and determine what you like and this could be a way to find other matching resources to read. I think this may be similar to StumbleUpon in how you can stumble topics/categories and just find cool stuff (but not sure yet).
Huddle is for group chats and communication with close peers, like deciding where to go hang out or what time to meet for dinner. This is designed to solve the texting people individually problem when you need to communicate with multiple people at the same time from your android device.
In reading most of the features it is clear that many are more beneficial or geared for Android and mobile devices, this is because more sharing is being done while out and about these days and Google is targeting to become the leader in mobile sharing of information. Android is their platform so their ability to integrate the Google+ services and pair it with the OS is key.
Though several of the features like Circles, Hangouts and Sparks look like they could benefit both computer and mobile users and I signed up to see if I can get an early invite.
If I get an invite and can start testing these services hands on, I will let my reader know.
You can read more straight from Google’s own blog here: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2011/06/introducing-google-project-real-life.html or you can participate demo of Google+ services from Google’s site to see it for yourself.
So do you think this will become a mass appeal device or become a failed attempt to capture and capitalize on social sharing? What are your thoughts?