Google+ loses exclusive feel as network opens to public

Google+ loses exclusive feel as network opens to public

Summary: Google+ is now available to everyone without an invitation after everyone who wanted one already signed up.


Google+ debuted as would could be argued as the most significant social network challenge to Facebook yet. Although it has been accessible on an invite-only basis since it launched in late June, membership numbers have increased by the millions on a weekly basis.

Yet, enthusiasm for Google+ has died down a bit considerably in the last month. Thus, it's time to open the digital doors to everyone.

Vic Gundotra, senior vice president of engineering at Google, wrote on the official Google blog:

For the past 12 weeks we’ve been in field trial, and during that time we’ve listened and learned a great deal. We’re nowhere near done, but with the improvements we’ve made so far we’re ready to move from field trial to beta, and introduce our 100th feature: open signups. This way anyone can visit, join the project and connect with the people they care about.

As Gundotra acknowledges that Google+ has a long way to go when it comes to pushing out features to keep competing with Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and the rest of the social media sphere, it's a tad surprising that it took Google+ to become open to the public after this long. At this point, it seems like anyone who wanted to sign up for Google+ must have known someone who could have invited them by now.

I must have had nearly a hundred invites at my disposal by last week, and I didn't use one. (Now Spotify -- those invites are still hot tickets.)

However, Google+ has had some challenges along the way -- most of which Google brought upon itself. Namely, the name issue. Google has been beaten up in the blogosphere for deleting accounts that it deemed to be fake based on however they were judging people's names. (Just read ZDNet's Violet Blue's account of what happened to her account.)

It also doesn't help that Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt basically said that Google wants to own everyone's online identities.

Nevertheless, Google+ does have some growing to do. Many analysts speculate that the Internet isn't big enough for two giant, general social networks. Time will tell if Facebook and Google+ can co-exist, or whether one will kill off the other.


Topics: Social Enterprise, Apps, Google

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  • RE: Google+ loses exclusive feel as network opens to public

    Google+ is pretty much dead from the word go.
    I was pretty enthusiastic about it, but one person having a one in a life shot to put your correct age on your profile and NOT having ANY chance to change the age killed my main account. I don't even know what my age is on that account because i CAN'T see it! Created another one I used an alias, a month later i had my account suspended, not even a warning or nothing. The better part of it is that i changed the account to my REAL name using the process provided by G+ the name changed but the account was still locked down. So I simply deleted the account and so long Google. I like your Search, Email, Docs, Finance, Reader, Maps, Calendar and so on, but you simply suck balls when your policies batter people around with your hypocrisy.
    Remember Wave and Buzz?
    And yes Facebook upped the game and pretty much offers the same things now. At least G+ was good for it. All the best.
  • RE: Google+ loses exclusive feel as network opens to public

    It's very hard to believe billion dollar capital and lots of genious working at Google can't handle or understand Facebook social site concept. I think google too much divided into projects. And they should leave or give up the claim internet is ours mentality. Internet can create many <a href="">facebook</a> and many <a href="">google</a> like giant companies. Time will prove it for us.
  • Where did all the hype go?

    When G+ opened to beta, all the tech media types were fawning over how it was a facebook killer, blah blah. Now it opens to the public and it's ho-hum, whatever. All the momentum that G+ seemed to have going for it seems to have died.
  • Plus is Open to Everyone Except Google Customers

    "Google+ is not yet available for Google Apps. Thanks for your patience!"

    Google has once again made a brand new app which doesn't work with Apps accounts. I went through hell converting my Apps accounts over to regular Google accounts to eliminate precisely this problem. Now I'm back to the same old thing: some apps work and some don't.
  • Still too restrictive

    When they loosen up I may look.... Maybe...
    With the beta Google showed I cannot trust them.
    I have started divesting from Google services, actually completed most of it.

    btw: Bing is not bad
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