Photos: Inside Google+ - how to use Circles, Hangouts, Sparks and more

Photos: Inside Google+ - how to use Circles, Hangouts, Sparks and more

Summary: Take a tour of the Google+ private beta - Mark Zuckerberg already has...

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  • Google+ Sparks

    Here's a view of a Sparks stream on robotics.

    Sparks is where search meets social, giving Google the chance to flex its algorithmic muscle. It can also be described as Google Reader for RSS dummies.

    Image: Google/Natasha Lomas/silicon.com

  • Google+ Hangouts

    The standout feature of Google+ has to be Hangouts, a group videoconferencing feature that's a cross between Chatroulette and Apple's FaceTime.

    Hangouts allows Google+ users to start a video chat room and tell friends or particular Circles they are in the mood for some face time. Up to 10 people can join the video chat with the main camera view switching depending on who's speaking. Users can also chat via text using an IM window alongside the video feed, similar to Skype.

    Image: Google/Natasha Lomas/silicon.com

  • Google+ IM Chat

    Another comms feature built in to Google+ is Google Chat, an instant messaging system that will be familiar to Gmail users as Google recycles another bit of existing functionality.

    Facebook has a built-in IM system too of course. Sign in to chat and then hit up any online contacts or Circles who have enabled the feature.

    Image: Google/Natasha Lomas/silicon.com

Topics: Apps, Software Development

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