It looks like one more grave may soon be dug in the Google Graveyard.
In 2011 Google launched its Social Media platform to a barrage of scepticism. To some Google+ was a fantastic new product, ready to replace the likes of Facebook and Twitter. To others however, Google+ was a nuisance. It was a poor substitute to other Social networks. Unfortunately for Google, this second group outnumbered the first by around fifty to one.
Four years down the line and Google+ now has one foot in the grave. Google’s Vice President Bradley Horowitz has announced that he will be taking Google+ back off David Besbris, its current manager, and splitting it up into its component parts. These will be smaller products; of which we know Photos and Streams will be two of those broken apart and sold separately.
Although details are somewhat hazy at the moment, Horowitz has released a few facts to the public. The concept of Photos is somewhat self explanatory in that it will be about curating photographs online. Streams seems a bit more ambiguous. It appears that it will be what is left of Google+ once all the separate elements have been stripped away. It will be the bare bones of what Google+ was originally intended to be.
In an interview printed in Forbes, Google’s Senior VP of Products Sundar Pichai was quoted as saying:
"I think increasingly you’ll see us focus on communications, photos and the Google+ stream as three important areas, rather than being thought of as one area."
I think increasingly you’ll see us focus on communications, photos and the Google+ stream as three important areas, rather than being thought of as one area.
Horowitz insists that this is a positive move for the company and that Google users should maintain their faith in them. He insists that the move is one that will benefit users all together.
Google Hangouts will possibly become further integrated with Gmail as opposed to going down the route of staying a part of Google+.
It is unknown, as of yet, how this will change or affect SEO.
This is a part of a huge Social Media revolution at the moment. Facebook has recently announced its acquisition of WhatsApp, and Twitter have just announced that they will be renewing their relationship with Google.
The debate we are having here at CAB is whether this means that Google+ will be the latest addition to the Google Graveyard or will it remain as a separate product? It is not currently clear whether this is a reformatting or a salvaging operation at the moment.
What is known is that there is a net migration towards smaller Social platforms. This has become evident over the past year, with both Facebook and Twitter moving towards different usable apps on mobile devices. With so many Social platforms out there, specialising in different aspects of the Social landscape, it is harder for the big companies to keep up with their competition.
What we do know is that Google+ will be changing dramatically over the next few months. This has split the office in terms of opinion, and we are fascinated to see how things unfold.