After two-and-a-half months of ‘invitation only’ testing, the Google+ social network is being opened up for anyone to join. Google+ has been praised for several innovative features including its multi person ‘hangouts’ video chat and the ability to group contacts in various ‘circles’, such as friends, relatives, business contacts etc.
Two weeks after it launched, the company announced that its service had attracted 10 million users and the web analytic firm Comscore now estimates that membership reached 25 million by the end of the first month.
There is much talk as to whether people will switch from Facebook or Twitter to Google+, although there is no reason why people shouldn’t or wouldn’t use all three. Perhaps it would be better if no single platform dominated the scene, especially as cross-posting between different networks is generally possible by one means or another.
Healthy competition should certainly encourage the major players to constantly add new features and improve existing ones.
One feature that Google+ appears to be sticking to, which seems to irk some potential users, is the requirement that people must use their ‘proper names’ and not the strange aliases used on most other networks.
But if you’ve got nothing to hide, where’s the problem?