What is G+?

G+, we hear a lot about it.  Mostly, it’s about how Google Plus is Google’s answer to Facebook.  If it is, it’s a weak answer.  It has a few features like creating circles in which you can place your contacts so you can control who sees what in your profile.  Google claims that there are 150 million active users on G+; that pales in comparison to Facebook’s 800 million.  So Google’s answer is no good. That means it’s time to redefine the question.  Vic Gundotra, Google’s senior vice president of social business answers the question: What is G+?

“Google+ is just an upgrade to Google,” Gundotra told Mashable.  He goes on to explain that G+ is just another way to connect to things that you care about. It’s supposed to serve as a bridge from the search engine and services like Google hangout.  From an IT consulting perspective, another question has to be asked: Where’s the money? Gundotra explains.

“We think the right time to show an ad is when you are at the moment of commercial intent. When I’m doing a house remodel, and I’m looking for a microwave oven, then I see Bradley’s +1 on a GE appliance, that means a lot more to me.”

That’s a very important distinction between G+ and Facebook.  Facebook seems have the tendency to spam ads.  I see ads and invites to groups that have nothing to do with me.  The overwhelming number of advertisements that have little relevance are easier to tune out.  However, since Facebook has the user number edge, it’s pressing the Law of Averages.  Someone somewhere will click on an ad. Google is definitely playing the long game.  It’ll be interesting to see how it evolves. I’ll place my bets on the creation of private social networks.  But more on that next time.