Google+ is open for trials but what’s the big fuss?

Posted on July 12, 2011 by

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After a little running around TheTechnoBlog.org has managed to get an invite to start using Google+ before it is officially released to the wider public.

For those of you who haven’t heard, Google+ is set to be the next big social networking site. Or is it? I’ve been looking into Google’s latest web offering…

When you first log in using your Google details you may be a little put off  by how confusing the layout seems. You’ll probably remember back when you first signed up to Facebook (or that dinosaur Myspace) how difficult it is, at first, to navigate your way around; nevertheless you’re sure to see some familiar characteristics from other popular social networking sites.

You may start to think, ‘hmm this looks slightly familiar’ and wonder how much ‘inspiration’ was taken from the likes of Facebook but after a while you’ll begin to realise that this is actually a rather good thing.

Google have designed a social networking site that picks up on the flaws of Facebook. For example here are a list of features you’ll find that Google+ has that Facebook doesn’t (or probably soon will) have.

  • Instead of having friend groups you will use ‘circles’ on Google+ and every time you wish to post a status update you have to select which circles you wish to receive the update. e.g. Family, Friends and Colleagues. This means greater control over your information and less embarrassment when you bitch about your boss to your friends only to find out they’ve seen.
  • When you include data on your profile page you can choose (as you type) who you want to have access to your information. I personally would feel a lot safer about putting a phone number on this site knowing that only specific circles will be able to see it.
  • You can also easily filter your stream so that you can switch between posts from your family members, your friends and even acquaintances meaning there’s no real need to ever delete people like I’m sure you’ve done on Facebook.

  • There is an option to have a ‘hangout’ whereby yourself and a number of other users can join a chat room using web cams and microphones. Google’s answer to Facebook’s new tie to Skype perhaps?
  • Also as you would expect Google has integrated Google+ with its search engine. Now after you’re done browsing for news and information online you can simply click a small button in the top left to revert back to your Google+ page.
At the end of the day if Google+ is to take off it will need to offer experiences that the likes of Twitter and Facebook cannot match. You can be sure that the team at Google have tried extremely hard to avoid falling into the Myspace trap but have they done enough?
Google haven’t announced when Google+ will be made available to the public yet but if you sign up here you will receive an email as soon as it’s released to the public.

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Posted in: Reviews, Technology