devxlogo

Google Plus

Definition

Google Plus, often stylized as Google+, was a social networking platform developed and operated by Google. Launched in June 2011, it aimed to streamline communication and sharing between users, emphasizing on privacy and user control. However, due to low user engagement and data breaches, Google decided to discontinue Google Plus for consumers in April 2019.

Phonetic

The phonetic pronunciation of “Google Plus” is: /ˈɡuːɡəl ˈplʌs/

Key Takeaways

  1. Google Plus was a social network platform created by Google, aimed at simplifying social interactions and sharing interests, but was shut down in 2019.
  2. One of the main features of Google Plus was “Circles,” which allowed users to organize their contacts, manage privacy settings, and share content with specific groups of people.
  3. Despite its initial growth and user engagement, Google Plus faced security issues and declined in popularity, leading to its eventual shutdown and transition towards Google services for business use.

Importance

Google Plus, although now defunct, was an important technology term as it represented Google’s foray into the social networking sphere.

Launched in 2011, it aimed to compete with established platforms like Facebook and Twitter, while providing several unique features, such as Google Hangouts and Circles, for better user engagement, communication, and interests-based sharing.

Google Plus integrated well with other Google services, creating a cohesive ecosystem for its users; however, it could not gain a strong user base in comparison to its competitors and faced a data breach.

Despite being shut down in 2019, Google Plus marks a significant milestone in the history of social media and tech giants’ diversification efforts into various digital domains.

Explanation

Google Plus, commonly known as Google+, was a social media platform developed by Google with the primary purpose of connecting people with similar interests and providing a space for rich online discussions and interactions. Launched in June 2011, Google+ promised a more secure and efficient alternative to existing social networks, such as Facebook and Twitter. One of its differentiating features was the introduction of “Circles,” a mechanism for users to organize their connections according to various categories, such as family, friends, and colleagues.

This allowed users to engage in more meaningful and targeted conversations. In addition to Circles, Google+ attempted to uplift the online sharing experience with features like Google Hangouts, a group video call tool, and Communities, where people with common interests could collaborate and share information. Over time, Google+ found its niche within the technology sector, with professionals using Google+ to connect and converse with like-minded individuals.

This was particularly favored by tech-minded users, who saw value in the platform for exchanging ideas and insights about the Google ecosystem and technology in general. However, despite its ambitions, Google+ experienced a decline in user activity and engagement, primarily due to the dominance and popularity of other social media platforms. In October 2018, following a data breach that exposed the user information of hundreds of thousands of its users, Google announced the gradual discontinuation of Google+, making a final shut down in April 2019.

Examples of Google Plus

Google Plus (Google+) was a social network platform developed by Google, operational between 2011 and

Here are three real-world examples of how Google Plus was used:

Communities: Google Plus allowed users to create or join Communities based on their interests, hobbies, industries, or professions. These Communities acted as forums, bringing together people from all over the world to exchange ideas, share content, and engage in discussions. For example, photographers would join photography Communities to share their work, ask for critiques, and learn new techniques.

Hangouts: Google Plus incorporated a feature known as Hangouts, which allowed users to conduct video calls with up to 10 people simultaneously. Hangouts were often used for virtual meetings, webinars, and online classes. Google Apps for Education, for instance, often used Hangouts as a way to facilitate virtual classroom sessions and remote instruction.

Business Pages: Many businesses and brands established a presence on Google Plus to engage with their audience and improve their visibility on Google search results. Local businesses, for example, could create a Google Plus page to share updates, promotions, and events while linking their page to their Google My Business listing to improve local search results. Other organizations could share industry news and articles, as well as network with potential customers and partners.

Google Plus FAQ

What was Google Plus?

Google Plus, often written as Google+, was a social networking platform developed by Google. Launched in 2011, it aimed to facilitate web-based communication, relationship-building, content-sharing, and collaboration.

Why did Google create Google Plus?

Google developed Google Plus to compete with other popular social media platforms and to create a more personalized user experience. Google Plus provided a means to connect people based on common interests, share multimedia content, and engage in real-time discussions.

What were the key features of Google Plus?

Google Plus had several notable features, including Circles, Hangouts, and Communities. Circles enabled users to organize their connections into customized groups, Hangouts facilitated video and textbased conversations, and Communities allowed users to participate in topic-based discussions and content sharing.

Why did Google Plus shut down?

Google Plus shut down due to multiple factors, such as low user engagement, complex user interface, and stiff competition from other social networking platforms. In addition, Google decided to shut down Google Plus after discovering a security vulnerability that exposed the private data of over 500,000 users.

When did Google Plus shut down?

Google initially announced the shutdown of Google Plus in October 2018, with the consumer version slated to close in August 2019. However, due to an additional security issue, Google expedited the process and officially closed Google Plus for consumer use on April 2, 2019.

Related Technology Terms

“`

  • Google+ Hangouts
  • Circles
  • Communities
  • Google+ Events
  • Google+ Profile

“`

Sources for More Information

Technology Glossary

Table of Contents

More Terms