I’ve been playing around on Google+ since Friday last week. My preliminary analysis of this new platform was that it’s a cross between both Facebook and Twitter. It’s an enhanced Twitter with it’s sharing capabilities but less social than Facebook. Now that I’ve been using it for several days, I’ve discovered that Google+ is actually much broader and than your average social networking site.
Over the last few years Google has been introducing bits and pieces of what we know today as Google+. Google had launched Google Buzz, then it launched Google Profiles which are both applications that don’t seem to be that connected. Then just this quarter, Google launched their +1 feature which works similar to Facebook’s “Like” feature, allowing users to use that to recommend content that they either like or found useful. Google+ has brought all these apps together and more expanding the reach of Google’s entire network of apps. A PCWorld.com article explained Google+ as “an email service, blogging platform, micro-blogging site, news feed, video conferencing system, chat service, location-based social network and more” and they are exactly right.
My initial experience with Google+ was confusing but after playing around a little bit, the functionality became pretty intuitive. Although Google+ may seem like another Facebook type platform, to me it’s more of a compliment to Facebook and Twitter. Facebook is where all the social stuff happens. Twitter is where people go to get information quickly. Google+ is going to be the place users go to be social and share information. Of course some people may adopt Google+ as their primary social platform of choice but there will still be many people and businesses that continue to use Facebook and Twitter. I guess we’ll see what happens in the next few months. Overall, Google+ is heading in the right direction.