Category: developers journal

Google+ is here

Author: Daemon July 4, 2011

Google Plus

So, Google+ is here. Everyone is on it already, clicking and making Circles. It actually looks nice, but nice is a subjective term, I have actually heard from some folks that "it is too white and too simple".

I would really like for Google+ to make it big. To stand shoulder to shoulder with Facebook, and maybe one day overthrow the giant Zuckerberg. But, from what I see, it will not be able to do it. Why?

Simple, Google+ is set on wrong foundations which came from wrong assumptions. All the features of Google+ available at launch day are here to completely differentiate G+ from Facebook. The logic of all starting features are here to plug a hole in Facebook.

Circles? They plug a hole in Facebook's inherit problem that basically all of the people you have are in the same relationship to you - they are all your friends on the same level.

Hangout? Video chat, plugs a hole which Facebook did not have covered.

Mass chat? Yup, Facebook does not have that, it has only 1-on-1 chat.

So basically, Google designer(s) *gasp!* and engineers sat down, made a checklist of what is missing from Facebook, and made a site that covers that checklist, or at least big spots on it. And I really do not understand the logic behind such a move. Google just assumed that Facebook is dumb. Did they think that Facebook overlooked those features? Did they really think that Facebook did not come up with those ideas on it's own? That the product development department in Facebook is sitting on their asses doing nothing?

No, Facebook tested that, and more!

Facebook knows Circles is a clever idea but it takes too much effort to neatly organize people you know into separate lists. Dump everyone into same list, then remove them if they are annoying. Simple.

Video Chat? Oh, yes, video chat. Stuff we see all the time in Enterprise and SF movies. Not in reality. I have never EVER EVER saw anyone use video chat except for testing purposes. Be it over Skype, Apple's Facetime, MSN Live or any service. Video chat is complicated. It is technically screwed up (requires camera setup) but more than that - it requires you to be in a situation where you can video chat. You must always look at the camera and smile. You cannot browse porn sites in the background. You cannot lie to your boss "Yes yes, I am just on my way to work" while in reality you are still in bed. It is just too much situational to be mainstream. Yes, I understand that a soldier in Afghanistan could find video chat nice invention to see his newborn baby, but for common folks - video chat is INCONVENIENCE. It is just a bad thing.

Mass chat? IRC does that. Who uses IRC today? Nerds.

Remember Facebook Lite? Clean and simple version? It is closed now, and it is closed for a reason.

In short: Google+ believes that Facebook is doing it wrong, and is trying to plug those "wrong" holes. Silly Google.

Overall, Google+ is a noble attempt. I would like to see it do something. But I believe it is going in the steps of Buzz & Wave. Sadly.


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