So to start with the slightly bigger news, Google Plus has had a little re-jig this week. It has decided that it no longer wants to sit in the shadows and is planning to take on bigger boys Facebook and Twitter for social network supremacy. They have stuck to a “three column” approach, as to maintain its previously flat look of its social networking features and to also match what is used on their iPad and Android applications. No more will you have to trawl through heaps of status updates that are no doubt filled with pictures of cats and other such cute and fluffy animals, or even worse, memes.
Google has announced to its customers that if they do not wish to have this new triple-the-fun wall then they can revert to having just the one column for updates and such. Following in it’s rivals footsteps, Google are focussing more on the visual side of social interaction (lucky for those cat lovers) and have updated to higher resolution quality images. They even boast to be adding facial recognition and automatic touch up of photo’s that are uploaded to the system. If that wasn’t enough for you, Google have taken to the craze of hashtagging, but these are hashtags with a difference. Hashtags are to be automatically added to a post based on the content written into the update bar, so you don’t even have to think about it as the plus team have got it covered.
Now to talk about Google Hangouts, much like Facebook chat and Blackberry Messenger it is a service that allows you to speak instantly with other people who have a spiffingly good internet connection. You can do much of the same things as you would on other messaging systems such as send pictures, have group conversations and even video calling. To top it all off you can stream your hangouts online for all to see, good for those who like to rant. It is available to download by the end of this month globally on Android, iOS and Chrome, but a lot of people have their concerns about Google’s new approach to social media. They might be new to the scene, socially, but people should not forget that the company have been around a fairly long time (since 1998 to be precise). It’s like that kid at school who was always sat on their own and was rather quiet and shy and just got on with their work, but turned out to be Bill Gates. It’s always the quiet ones.