Google is now in the social networking competition; about a month ago, the newest social network, Google+, became available to the public. Google+ is described as a combination of all the social networks out today plus much more. “Google+ makes connecting on the web more like connecting in the real world.” This quote taken directly off of Google+’s website illustrates just how Google gives a person a single place to discover news of friends, co-workers, family and even media news. I believe that Google’s idea of combining all the qualities of other social networking sites will eventually succeed in the long run and even obtain more members than their competition, Facebook and Twitter.
Google’s technology is not a new invention by any sorts; however I believe that it brings value to users through improved organization and a few new ideas. For instance, Google+ invented “circles” which organize and label groups of friends together for the user. This allows a plus user to permit only certain friends, family, or co-workers to see certain types of published posts. Circles are different from Facebook friendships and following on Twitter. On Facebook, to see updates or posts by another person, the user must be in a mutual friendship with them. Additionally, Twitter is disorganized, since users cannot format everyone they follow into different groups.
The format Google+ uses also shows how well the site will compete with other major social networking sites. Overall, Google+ provides a simple and clean format that is user friendly, which I believe will attract many new members including the younger and older generation. Facebook’s target market is mostly directed towards the younger and more technologically comfortable generation. Google+, however, is able to also attract older users since they will feel more comfortable with the format. Additionally, Google+ allows longer posts than Twitter so in that aspect, Google+ will be able to become more successful. As result of Google+’s innovative additions to social networking, also including high quality pictures, group video chats, and mobile device integration, I believe Google+ will increase members.
Google+ has so many great features available for its users but one may argue that it will not become as popular as Facebook as a result of its low member count at the moment. Facebook currently has control over the majority of the social networking population with over 750 million users. It is the most popular network out of others such as Twitter and MySpace. On the other hand, Google+ currently has only a small 25 million members. The huge difference in numbers makes Google+ seem like a “ghost town” to some of its users. Conversely, other members believe that Google+ contains an “active and pleasant” environment. One must take into account the difference in time period between Google, Facebook, and Twitter. Google+ was founded just three months ago whereas Facebook has been established for seven years and Twitter for five years. By simply comparing how long Google+ has been established and how many users it has compared to Facebook or Twitter’s years and members, Google+ has been very successful thus far. I believe that just how Facebook dominated MySpace, Google+ will also take over and control the majority of the social networking population.