Google+ has officially opened up to the public. It has been open only to users by invitation until now. Launched in late June of this year, the Google social network now has over 25 million unique visitors each month and will now be growing quite rapidly with invitations open to public. I myself have been getting a growing number of people adding me to their “circles” of friends who have just signed up.
Twitter has 100 million active users and Facebook has 750 million active users. Google+ being out for only 1 full month had reached over 25 million users, so it has the potential, not only to catch and pass Twitter, but also Facebook if there is enough consistent growth in the near future.
With cool features like Google Search integration and Hangouts and Talk, users will have the functionality of both a Facebook and Twitter-like usability. The search integration can show you what topics are currently trending with both user updates like Twitter along with search engine trends, and Hangouts and Talk are messaging and video-chat tools that are a huge improvement on Facebook’s messaging system. The mobile app for Talk is astonishingly quick and extremely useful for creating chat-rooms to message multiple people in a timely fashion, and Hangouts are an upgraded version of Facebook’s new video chat deal with Skype. It can let a user video-chat with up to ten of those person’s friends, which can be extremely fun or useful. This also has a mobile up which can be really fun to use.
If the wave catches on like it did with Facebook, Google’s size and innovation could potentially blow Facebook and Twitter out of the water. It just released its API which will help 3rd party application builders create games to use on Google+ and with its new public invitations on what are many peoples homepage nowadays, Google’s growth could become exponential once again within days. New creative ideas get shot out of Google daily. One example is the new app called Google Wallet, which essentially allows you to pay a bill without even having to use a credit card.
With Google collecting more and more data about individuals through their applications, they’re power through knowledge could eventually become insurmountable for Facebook, even with all of their knowledge on their users. This battle may come down to who knows the user best, which could be a little scary when someone really thinks about it…