Will The Google+ Project Out Social Facebook?

Google began rolling out a social network called Google+ that it believes will crack the code on the social market game. If it can convince consumers to become members by giving up a few personal details and a photo to build a profile, the site could make the Mountain View, Calif. search engine a formidable social competitor to Facebook.

Google+ became available to a limited number of users, quickly meeting capacity. Then on Tuesday, Vic Gundotra, senior vice president of Engineering at Google, wrote in a blog post that it would soon become available in the Android Market, on the mobile Web, and in the App Store.

The social site supports streaming feeds and access to select groups of friends. There are five basic pieces: Circles, Sparks, Hangouts, Instant Uploads, and Huddle.

Circles allow members to group contacts into circles of friends to share content and ideas.

Sparks acts like an RSS reader. It delivers a feed of content from across the Internet on any topic requested in more than 40 languages.

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Hangouts offers live multi-user video conferencing for up to 10 people. When the status is set to "Live," friends can click "Join This Hangout" to get face time.

Huddle is a group texting feature similar to instant message.

No word yet on features and services for advertisers and marketers, but brands can surely expect to see paid-search ads and behavioral targeting for display ads.

Helping more people extract data stored in other Google sites, the company also launched Tuesday a tool called Google Takeout, which could come in handy when users want to import data into Google+. The technology creates a ZIP file that users can download and import into other programs.

 

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