With Google+ moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be "really awesome"

With Google+ moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be "really awesome"

Summary: The race for King of Social crown heats up as Facebook gears up for "awesome" news today and Google+ keeps evolving as early birds give the company a list of features they'd like to see ahead of the public launch later this summer.

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The pressure is on at Facebook, which is expected to make an “awesome” announcement this morning. No one knows for sure what the news might be but, with the sort of momentum I’ve been watching unfold on Google+ over the past few days, the Facebook announcement will have to be “really awesome” if it wants to steal some of the Google+ chatter.

Google+ has only been out for a week - six days for me - and already, I’m starting to not only recognize its value but am also starting to envision its potential.

Google has this long list of products - mail, maps, docs and others that carry its name, as well as several others that are branded independently, such as Blogger, Picasa and YouTube. Word is that the company will change some names - YouTube being the exception - for more consistency under the Google brand. Picasa is already becoming a major piece of the Google+ puzzle, integrated as simply “photos,” and the potential to bring others into the mix can’t be too far behind.

You see, Google+ is already becoming more than just a social network. It’s more like a new platform for communications, almost like what Wave could have been if it hadn’t tried to enter the scene as something new and unknown. If Wave had come in looking more like, well, Facebook and then rolled in all of the other stuff later - you know, like file sharing, video chat, voice communications and so on - then maybe it wouldn’t have been shuttered so quickly.

Already, I’m seeing examples on Google+ users testing the boundaries of what it can become, how it will be used and how much they’re willing to share. Vic Gundrota, Google’s Senior VP for Engineering, posted on his Google+ account late last week, “We’re listening. And making changes. Daily.” It was accompanied by a video of a Google software engineer announcing two changes that would be implemented over the holiday weekend. And finally, there were hundreds of comments to his post, many of which included suggestions for design changes and integration with other products.

And then there was the New York Times post about how Hangouts, as a video chatroom experience, has potential to be the killer app for Google+. While I’m not necessarily the type of guy who would jump into a video hangout room for a virtual karaoke all-nighter with friends, I certainly would join in for a virtual business meeting.

Ah, yes, businesses. Let’s not forget that Google has been pushing hard, with its Apps offerings, to get into the business environment. And suddenly, there’s potential for a communications platform that businesses could tap into - a single place where personal lives and business lives can securely co-exist, with the users deciding how much overlap there will be.

I don’t know that businesses would be so quick to adopt a Facebook model for video conferencing or other communications. However, a piece of speculation about today’s Facebook announcement has the news as a joint effort - perhaps video chat - between Facebook and Skype. Skype, of course, is about to be acquired by Microsoft, which is a rival to Google in the business software space, among others.

Isn’t it nice when all of the pieces of the puzzle fall into place and things start making sense?

As a side note, I can’t help but wonder how much scrambling is going on in Washington as regulators try to keep track of all of the latest developments. Remember: the Federal Trade Commission isn't just poking around Google. It's investigating Twitter now, too. Things change fast in Silicon Valley and you've got to move just as fast if you want to keep up.

Maybe this is just what Washington needed to finally start moving at more of a Silicon Valley-like pace.

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Topics: Social Enterprise, Google

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25 comments
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  • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

    what is there to be scared off? creating an artificial shortage of supply by limiting invites and saying its a beta, google is genrating hype and misconception that google+ is in demand. google+ can do nothing that fb cannot and since, a recent report states that you cannot have private information in it, what makes it any better than facebook? further having another place to share my info is worrying for anyone. remember "google is a company that lives on selling our personal data to advertisers." They cannot be any better than facebook
    abhi.jamwal
    • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

      @abhi.jamwal "google is a company that lives on selling our personal data to advertisers." - FYI So is faceBook. Google+ seems to have better control over privacy.

      "google+ can do nothing that fb cannot". Try to do circles and hangout in faceBook. Now you can stay with fB while it goes down the drain.
      browser.
      • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

        @browser. So let me get this straight and on the record. You're saying google+ (from the makers of google Buzz) not only does privazy better than facebook but also that google+ will spell the demise of facebook? Delusional much?
        boone51
      • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

        @browser. You sound sure of yourself... have you wrangled an invite to Google+ and used it? Use Facebook? If not then your "Try to do circles and hangout in faceBook" comment does not hold water.

        Until I can get my grubby mitts on Google+ and give it a whirl right now I'm good with FB...
        athynz
      • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

        @browser. i dont even feel like replying to you, coz you.....are a google troll <br>so forget it
        abhi.jamwal
  • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

    Go Google go...
    shellcodes_coder
    • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

      @shellcodes_coder So you'd trade facebook out for google? I think everyone should be careful about what they wish for. You might want to see facebook fall a few notches, but for google to profit from that... I mean, isn't google already scary enough?
      boone51
  • Nonsense (GFail)

    Sorry, but this is Google fanboy hype, is it not?

    "Google moving in fast"

    By what measure?

    Google+ is not "moving in fast" by any measure. Any such suggestion is pure hyperbole.

    Why do certain tech journalists seem to suspend rational thought when reporting trendy Google/Apple stories? It's embarassing. The undue hype and optimism make every GFail, like Wave and Buzz, look like even greater flops. Google+ is already clearly another GFail.
    Tim Acheson
    • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

      @Tim Acheson
      And yet Facebook suddenly blocks a web app that allows contact exporting and has to announce some new mystery feature? Sounds like they are running scared to me.
      Droid101
    • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

      @Tim Acheson

      "Google+ is not 'moving in fast' by any measure."

      Only because it's invite only.
      CobraA1
  • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

    abhi.jamwal and Tim Acheson, is extremely obvious you guys don't know what your talking about and embarrassing yourselves in front of the audience that is already beta-testing that product as I am.

    I do understand that if you have not been using it, you might not get the idea of what Sam explains here, but spewing that nonsense without actually having a well formed experience is shows how immature you guys are, independent of your actual age.

    I am still forming my opinions as objective as possible about Google+, and I do understand the possibilities tech journalists are writing about.

    Might it become what some say it could? I don't know, but as I say yesterday in the gmmunity, I will keep on using G+ anyways, because Facebook or not, for me it has value.
    czorrilla
    • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

      @czorrilla, don't feel bad. There are lots of people on the interwebs who are quick to wag their judgmental finger at someone in a condescending tone just like you're doing here, so you have plenty of company. I'm sure that you were pleased with your comment at some point when you read it back in your mind, but you should know it doesn't help or solve anything. Quite the opposite, in fact. It just feeds the flames. Obviously I can't speak for everyone, but I *think* what bothers most of the google+ detractors is the fact that it's a google product. Whether or not I've seen google+ is irrelevant to my overall opinion of google, which is that they were way too big before they started making this second or third foray into the social networking space. I don't like facebook, but I'm terrified of google. I don't think I'm alone there. To want google to succeed over facebook seems equivalent to wanting Exxon to beat out BP. I just can't get motivated enough to pick a side in that fight. ---all that being said, can't wait to get my google+ invite to check it out...lol
      boone51
      • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

        @boone51

        Condescending or not, I like your style a lot!
        czorrilla
    • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

      @czorrilla lol,
      abhi.jamwal
    • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

      @czorrilla I admit I'm one of those who is not using it and therefore I do not have the necessary first hand experience to praise it or trash it - but until it goes public and sees more widespread use beyond the current beta testers then Facebook has little to be concerned with.

      Having said that I'm pretty excited to get my grubby mitts on it and give it a try.
      athynz
      • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

        @athynz

        LOL*10
        czorrilla
  • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

    Google+ is a combo of Buzz and Orkut. Look how those turned out.
    LoverockDavidson
    • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

      @LoverockDavidson

      Orkut has 100,000,000 users, that's about the same as LinkedIn.
      OffsideInVancouver
  • Does FB's announcement really have to be all that awesome?

    FB is a shipping product. Google+ is just something I hear a lot about from tech journalists.

    From my perspective Google+ is (or might as well be) vapourware, since neither I nor anyone I know is on it.
    Mac_PC_FenceSitter
  • RE: With Google moving in fast, Facebook's news needs to be

    It will be a search engine whithin facebook to take on Google...
    Hasam1991