Google recently released its new social media answer to Facebook called Google+. Although many are sceptical of the new social ecosystem, many of its features do seem to trump those of Facebook.
Google+, like Facebook, allows users to ‘friend’ people, however Google+ has a feature called ‘Circles’ which basically allows its user to group their friends into…well, circles.
With each different ‘friend circle’ you can share specific information with them and only them. This allows your sharing and communicating to become much more personal rather than messaging all your friends at once.
Another feature is ‘Sparks’ where a user searches for things of interest and when they find something they like they can share it with people in specific Circles. Sparks allows the user to have a continual flow of information on their chosen topics so they will always have something to interact with in their select circle of friends.
Lastly, Google has added a feature called ‘Hangout’. When a friend is online a button stating ‘hang out’ shows up next to them. Clicking on this button will open up a video chat screen where other users can join and spend time with their circles.
Google seems to have taken all the social aspects from Facebook and created a network which is more personal for the user. However, like many new social media platforms, when starting up a Google+ account users must start their friend database all over again.
iPhone users are excluded as Google+ allows only those with Android Smartphones the ability to download the Google+ app – something Facebook chose to do differently by allowing all Smartphone and iPhone users access.
At the ripe old age of 7, Facebook could be in danger of being dethroned as the king of social media. But as Facebook still seems to be at the centre of most people’s social networking world it would seem that no new platform – no matter how new and interesting – is going to change that for a while.