Google+ opens to the public
Google+ has fully opened to the public, meaning anyone can now join the newest social network.
Up until now, people have required an invitation from existing users or Google employees to join the social network hoping to take on Facebook.
Launched in late June, the site has already surpassed 25 million members and is expected to reach 100 million members by the end of 2011. In 2004, it took Facebook 10 months to reach 1 million users.
Google+ is by far the most successful social product Google has yet to produce in an attempt to rival Facebook’s unparalleled popularity and success.
The search company has made the announcement 48 hours ahead of f8, Facebook’s annual conference, at which the social network is expected to announce a new digital music service and media platform with a host of content partners.
“For the past 12 weeks we’ve been in field trial, and during that time we’ve listened and learned a great deal. We’re nowhere near done, but with the improvements we’ve made so far we’re ready to move from field trial to beta, and introduce our 100th feature: open signups,” wrote Vic Gundotra, senior vice president of engineering at Google, on the company blog.
Additionally Google+ has also made some changes to the site as it rolls out publicly. It has now enabled video ‘hangouts’, where people can talk via video in groups, to Android-powered mobile phones.
It has also enabled ‘hangouts’ to be broadcast publicly, in a similar fashion to the way YouTube allows cetains users to broadcast content live from an event.
Google+ users can now search for content and pull up results without leaving the social network’s environment. The results will pull together results on topics such as cooking, as well as relevant Google+ users and their posts on the searched-for topic.
Last week all three political leaders, David Cameron, Nick Clegg, and Ed Miliband, opened Google+ accounts, in the run up to party conference season.