engine - 5:47 pm on Nov 18, 2011 (gmt 0)
With the might of Google behind Google+ do we have a winner here?
It's hard to gauge if we have a winner because the stats which have come out, and the release program, have muddied the water a little. Hitwise releases stats showing big increases in sign-ups. I wonder how many of those sign-ups come back and re-use Google+?
I found it interesting to note that a recent article in the LA Times [latimesblogs.latimes.com] seems to ask the same questions I had in my mind.
One of technology's big unresolved dramas is whether Google can still cut into the giant social networking lead now held by rival Facebook -- or if its Google+ service is already sunk.
Data on the subject have been sparse, with much of the more recent information coming from traffic measurement firm Experian Hitwise. Hitwise has tended to release its numbers after Google+ has had a good week or two. Last week, for instance, was the site's third-biggest since launch, drawing nearly 7 million visitors, Hitwise said Wednesday.
The part that I struggle with is the need to log in to do everything. I dislike being logged in all the time. If i'm logged in to twitter it's not tracking my search, or the sites I visit. That's not the case with Google+.
I cannot, it appears, make my identity secondary when I want to 'market' a business or service without it being my name at the fore. In many instances, I don't want my name to be the key factor in the message that's going out, I want the business or service to be the leading point.
With circles I can choose who sees the messages. But, really, do I even want my family on Google+, especially when some are already on FB.
Will Google+ end up being just for geeks? Will it end up being too technical for the average user, unlike Facebook, which has been highly annoying at times, but relatively simple to use.
For sure, Google is committed to it, and as they add new services, such as music, more people will have to be logged in.
Are we just at the start of a great new social system, or are we seeing the development of a new techie-only facility?