Google has announced the Google+ project. The Google + project aims at fixing awkward and broken online sharing between humans. In other words it’s Google’s third attempt at social networking. Their first attempt, a MySpace project called Orkut is only still around because it’s widely popular in Brazil. Their second attempt, Google Buzz, never really gained mass appeal.
Much much much more after the break
The Google + project has set some lofty goals for itself but nonetheless it’s very interesting. At D9 back in May, Google’s Executive Chairman, Eric Schmidt, admitted that he failed at having Google adapt to the ever popular social media. At the recent IWNY conference in New York a Google exhibit chronicling the internet back to 1991, highlighted the fact that 2010 & 2011 are the years of Social media.
There are a few videos that show what Google + is all about but in a nutshell you take your social networking friends and group them into spheres or circles. For instance your immediate family, your not so immediate family, your besties, your friends of the opposite sex, your colleagues, your Android friends what have you. Then when you want to share something you can share it with the relevant circles or make a new one. This prevents mass sharing with your whole audience as you do in Facebook. Google dubs the Facebook process “Sloppy”.
The next aspect of the Google + project is +sparks.
This feature seems to be a social RSS subscription to see relevant content that you want to learn about and then share with your different circles. At release Sparks is going to offer content in 40+ languages. We’re thinking that Google is going to use the Google +1 button to select sharable content, makes sense right.
Google + Hangouts
Google doesn’t like the way instant messages work, I guess not even with the own G-Talk. They say, and they’re right, that even if someone is available you may be interrupting them. With Google Hangouts it takes a cue back to chatrooms of old where it separates hangouts by theme, or topic or you can even start your own. Once you’ve joined a hangout than your friends that aren’t busy can feel free to join. Hangouts are audio/video and text.
The +Mobile portion of the Google + project allows you to share things on the go whether it be a place to hang out, your current location, photos, videos etc. Google says that with your permission every picture you take on your mobile device can be uploaded to the cloud and shared instantly or when your ready. So point, shoot and fire away. Now you don’t have to sit and decide which photos to share and which ones not its done automagically.
Google’s +Huddle is group messaging. Select groups of friends or family members and plan your next trip to the mall, dinner or check in on the family.
It seems that this time around Google has all of their ducks in a row and they are drawing on experts from across all of their product lines. The Google + project is available by invite here
In their blog post Senior Vice President of Engineering Vic Gundotra, a name all Android enthusiasts know very well, highlights all of these unique features check it out here