The company has redesigned the top navigation bar to work across all of its services. Itâ€™s very similar to the notification bar found in Facebook, which alerts you whenever new activity occurs concerning your account.
â€œWeâ€™d like to bring the nuance and richness of real-life sharing to software. We want to make Google better by including you, your relationships, and your interests,â€ wrote Senior Vice President of Engineering Vic Gundotra in a blog post.
Google+ has a handful of sub-services designed to match specific social needs for each situation. Circles, which lets users divide up which of their friends / followers can see which content. Itâ€™s a feature Facebook took quite a while to develop with â€œlistsâ€.Â Also, thereâ€™s Hangouts, which works with each social Circle by creating access to a multi-person video chat. And since every respectable Facebook competitor needs one, the Sparks feature is a customized feed aggregator of content curated from across the web.
Google+ also has a mobile aspect, which is easily the portion that makes the most sense out of the entire project.
First of all, nearly every update made through Google+ lets users add location data. The company said it acknowledges the problem people have with unreliable wireless connections, which is why its built-in Instant Upload. The feature will save pictures that get cut off through faulty connections and upload them to the web later on. Finally, thereâ€™s Huddle, a group messaging experience that lets everyone inside the circle know whatâ€™s going on in real-time.
While itâ€™s clear that Google as spent a lot of effort on Google+, the company has a poor track record of success with social products. Social network Orkut, Google Buzz and Google Wave are all examples of products that ended in failure.
â€œâ€¦All you do is make your core product heavier. The thing you wanted to kill (Facebook) doesnâ€™t go anywhere. It hardly notices what you did. The users might care to the extent that theyâ€™re annoyedâ€¦ Products like the one Google just announced are hatched at off-sites at resorts near Monterey or in the Sierra, and were designed to meet the needs of the corporation that created it. A huge scared angry corporation.â€
At least in Facebookâ€™s case, it didnâ€™t need a series of videos to explain how to use its service. Google, on the other hand, has six total videos demonstrating the various uses of Google+.
Google+ is now available on Android Market and the mobile web. The company is testing the full roll out of the service, which is only available by invitation only.
People: Vic Gundotra
Article source: http://venturebeat.com/2011/06/28/googles-facebook-competitor/