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Is this the end for Google+?

Apr 28th 2014

With Google's Vic Gundotra, the Father of Google+ leaving Google after 8 years, what happens next?

With Google’s Vic Gundotra, the Father of Google+ leaving Google after 8 years, what happens next?

Rumours say Google+ will no longer be considered a product, but a platform — essentially ending its competition with other social networks like Facebook and Twitter.

Sources say Google has apparently been reshuffling the teams that used to form the core of Google+, a group numbering between 1,000 and 1,200 employees.

Many of those people are getting moved physically, as well — not necessarily due to Gundotra’s departure.

As part of these staff changes, the Google Hangouts team will be moving to the Android team, and it’s likely that the photos team will follow, these people said. Basically, talent will be shifting away from the Google+ kingdom and towards Android as a platform.

Google+ is widely considered to be Google’s fourth venture in to the Social arena following Orkut (2004-2013), Wave (2009-2011) and Buzz (2010-2011).

Google+ understood how different groups of people had different social circles, so pioneered Circles which made management of privacy and sharing neat and simple. That network was originally targeted at early adopters and tech savvy agencies first, then pulled in Google Local Business listings to draw in the Search Results hungry business community.

Hangouts were the big thing Google+ got right. Hangouts allow groups to communicate, share and broadcast video and streaming video, early signs indicate Hang-outs will live on if not through a different product.

So what of Google+?
Google+ although good, very good in fact, didn’t bring anything new to the Social party.

Though Circles were a nice touch as were Hang-outs they were enough to an online community wedded to Facebook for Social, LinkedIn for Business and Twitter for the micro-blogging community.

The truth is, in Google’s frantic quest to gain more data to provide better search products, it rushed to build a product to fulfill a need that simply wasn’t there in the first place.

An analogy I once heard about Google+ was “it’s like a fancy new night club opened up down the road, you walk in only to find the bar man, and a few geeks you don’t know sat in the corner”

As for what happens next, we’ll see…