So Google has introduced their answer(not their first) to social networking and I’m left scratching my head. I get the concept, its like Facebook, but its Google. My question is, will people use it? Thats part of what makes a social networking site viable is if I can get the people I want in my network to use it. The premise I think is, “Well everyone already has a gmail, so no problem.” I’m still not sure.
Though the “Hangout” feature is something nice that Facebook doesn’t have, built in video conferencing. And so far from the testers, word is its rather good. Better then Skype’s paid option. Also nice to see is the “Circles” concept. Facebook/Twitter has their lists, but this is conceptually closer to the idea of a network. As a user I should be able to put people into different groups and share content based on who I want to share it with, very much as in real life. In Facebook, this is possible, but its very clunky, and by default it treats everyone I add as a friend as equal. Sadly thats not true, and while I go through the trouble of organizing my contacts, others don’t and so the news is full of people sharing things they didn’t mean for someone else to see.
I’ve yet to apply for the field test, so go and read what the folks at Lifehacker have to say with their hands on experience.