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Google+ Gets More Than Just a Facelift

     
9:31 am on Nov 18, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Google has decided to give Google+ a redesign, and says it's more mobile friendly, and now focusing on Communities and Collections. According to Google, this is what users have been doing with it now all the other stuff is unbundled, such as forcing sign-ups for YouTube, etc.

You have to opt in to the new design at this stage, so google is still running ongoing tests in the way it normally does. Both iOS and Android apps are updated to help the focus on the features, and to remove the less used or less popular aspects.

[googleblog.blogspot.com...]

Today we’re taking a big step toward making Google+ an even better place for your interests. To do so, we’ve drastically simplified nearly every aspect of the product. You’ll see this clearly in our new navigation centered around Collections and Communities.Google+ Gets More Than Just a Facelift [plus.google.com]
But we didn’t stop with Collections and Communities; the new Google+ also makes it easier to post, search, connect, and keep up with great content in a fully redesigned home stream. And we’ve worked hard to make our new web experience load fast and work beautifully on devices of all sizes.


Added -
we’ve spent lots of time talking to people who are passionate about Google+. We visited them in their homes, we invited them into early testing communities and we learned more about how and why they use Google+.


It seems, according to that statement, they didn't go further and ask those that don't use it. Clearly it's no longer the catch-all it set out to be, and is now much more specialist.
3:17 pm on Nov 18, 2015 (gmt 0)

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I have seen a couple of Google+ pages that have been converted. Not really liking it.
4:38 pm on Nov 18, 2015 (gmt 0)

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It's certainly not the friendliest of UIs, and you can tell it was devised by engineers. ;)

I think they had to try and do something with G+ as it was not really going anywhere. It had a range of users, and they were happy to continue, so what I think they've done is to see what's working on it, and putting an emphasis on that aspect. In other words, Google has taken what people want from it.
9:13 pm on Nov 18, 2015 (gmt 0)

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It's never gonna catch on...leave the social networks to Facebook and others, stick with search and selling ads..
10:01 pm on Nov 18, 2015 (gmt 0)

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you can tell it was devised by engineers


Can you? That's funny, because the G+ post announcing this ( [plus.google.com...] ) is by Luke Wrobleski
- [lukew.com...]
- [abookapart.com...]

A noted figure and thought leader in the mobile design community with a strong background in design, advisor role at Zurb with undergrad degrees in Graphic Design and Art History and a Master of Fine Arts in Interface Design
[linkedin.com...]
11:06 pm on Nov 18, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Deckchairs..Titanic..
12:17 am on Nov 19, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Google, didn't you get the memo? Stop trying to make Google+ happen
Google+ has been a lot of things in its four years on our computers – a sort-of social network, an identity manager for other Google platforms, and something of an industry joke. Now Google is trying again with the portal that wouldn't die.

[theregister.co.uk...]
1:04 pm on Nov 19, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Google plus the biggest google fail but not the only one ...
1:21 pm on Nov 19, 2015 (gmt 0)

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@ergophobe
Yup, it was devised by engineers, and that may have been one of the original contributory reasons for it not taking off.
I admit, it looks better with the new design, but it's still not quite there.

Its new focus might help it become a platform for people to share in their own groups, which is I think what it's trying to become. I find it odd that you can't see the results in search as I would have expected. I know, there's already enough in the SERPs, but the options to find stuff there is just not as in-your-face as I would have expected. Not a complaint, and observations. If it does favour G+ in the SERPs it'll run into trouble, i'm sure.
1:53 pm on Nov 19, 2015 (gmt 0)

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One time I told my brother to take out the trash. Now you would think, it's pretty obvious... walk around the house and empty the bins, replace them with new bags, and then take the big bins outside where the garbage truck can take it away the next morning.

Anyway, The next day I got back from work... and the trash from the house wasn't empty. Therefore, none of the bags got replaced. The bins were outside, but they were backwards, so the trash that was outside, didn't get picked up anyway.

He's an engineer, and most engineers simply don't have "street smarts"... lol... come on Google, I have trouble using the interface because its really difficult to figure what button does what , my friends aren't techies so they don't care to use it, and nobody will bother adding you because again, nobody that's cool uses it. It's for nerds, made by nerds. They really need to scrap G+ or come up with something completely new so people will WANT to use it.

P.S. That's a true story.
2:54 pm on Nov 19, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Works for me.
6:27 pm on Nov 19, 2015 (gmt 0)

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>>Yup, it was devised by engineers,

Oh, you mean the whole original system. I thought you meant the recent changes.

So yes, in that case, as Leosghost said. Shades of MySpace.

>>He's an engineer, and most engineers simply don't have "street smarts".

Most I know do, but most I know are civil and mechanical engineers. The whole idea of a "software engineer" seems amiss.

My nephew is both a software engineer and a auto mechanic (races cars). He was telling me just the other day about how one of the things he sees in the software world from pundits who have never built anything physical is a gross underestimation of the complexity of apparently simple physical systems. Like they just don't realize what production costs are to change a manufacturing facility and what the "bug" tolerance is for a piston and why that means that you can't iterate as fast in the physical world.
6:43 pm on Nov 20, 2015 (gmt 0)

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The thing for me about G+ that I keep running into is I absolutely cannot find my way around. I have

- personal account for me
- account for work
- business page
- multiple locations for the business

I cannot ever figure out what's what and how to figure out where I am and what I'm doing. If I compare this to Facebook with a very similar account setup, it is night and day. It's so easy to switch from personal to work "person" accounts and then switch between different pages for different businesses.

This is perhaps the main reason we don't use Google+/Google My Business/Google Local/Google Whatever the #*$! it is these days - we literally struggle to figure it out.
6:49 pm on Nov 20, 2015 (gmt 0)

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@ergophobe
I rest my case. :)

Yes, it does have the "feature" of being a labyrinth.
11:17 pm on Nov 20, 2015 (gmt 0)

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@ergophobe - the new layout fixes the confusion. In upper-right (upper-left for mobile app) corner your name has a drop-down to choose which G+ page you're on.

Also, IMO G+ has a much greater *potential* to drive traffic to our businesses due to its proliferation in all Google properties. Too bad it will always be #2 compared to FB which got there first.
12:21 am on Nov 21, 2015 (gmt 0)

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@engine - as I say, I thought you were talking specifically about the changes. As a whole, I certainly don't disagree.

@keyplyr - actually, it does seem to have fixed some things. In the past, strange as this may sound, when logged in via the GMB app and via the website, I got different listings (same Google username and password). The pictures were totally outdated and I could never figure out where in the world they were. I still can't, but the good thing is the correct pictures now show in all cases.

So maybe there's hope.
7:49 am on Nov 21, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Google uses more Target="_blank(s)" than any other site I've ever seen --- Google Techies don't like to lose their spot, so they just keep using more and more tabs - Bookmarking is seemingly so beneath them ..
10:34 am on Nov 21, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Well despite the harsh critism, I've always tried to keep an active presence at G+ and have included their API in all my pages. I see a meager but steady traffic stream but nowhere near that of FB.
1:50 pm on Nov 22, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Well, this is a feel good thread. I thought it was just me having a hard time finding my way around g+ but now i see i am not alone.
6:58 pm on Nov 27, 2015 (gmt 0)

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I also had problems finding my way around G+ even before this recent "update" now it's even worse especially when I manage a few Google+ sites. I had to read through 4 different how to pages on the new changes to figure out how to post something and finally found an article that wasn't put out by Google that made sense. My biggest problem was the large red button at lower right that THEY decided would make it easy to edit the page - looked like an info icon so I didn't try that. And I read they will soon remove that also. I'm so sick of google changing things and changing names to everything. Facebook is a lot easier to navigate.
8:57 pm on Nov 27, 2015 (gmt 0)

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I disagree that FB is "easier" and they change things constantly as well and many things just don't work at all. If you find FB easier it may be you use FB more often.

Android users should be accustomed to the standards of that platform (+ means add) so possibly iOS users are the ones who get confused with G+.
6:12 am on Dec 2, 2015 (gmt 0)

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The design update has not been great for me. I reverted to the previous style just so that I could make posts more easily. I do most of my work on a desktop, so all of the mobile concessions didn't do much to improve things for me. I thought the changes slowed down the interface significantly and removed a lot of what had become intuitive after long use.
5:22 pm on Dec 2, 2015 (gmt 0)

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I also work exclusively from my computer and believe these issues are due to Google trying to be more mobile friendly.
1:36 pm on Apr 8, 2016 (gmt 0)

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I don't like this new design, I can't edit my profile information in it and I have to go to the old design to make changes. Also the same for the profile settings. Am I missing something?
 

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