Google+ is not a social network, says Google exec

Gundotra views Google+ as a Google 'upgrade,' and more than just a Facebook rival

By , Computerworld |  Internet, Google, Google+

A year after Google+ was launched, it seems Google is saying it's not really a social network after all.

Now this might be confusing to the 150 million people who actively use Google+ every month. They catch up with colleagues and friends on Google+ Circles. They chat with family members in Google+ Hangouts. They post photos. They watch videos.

So aren't those the things you do on a social network? Google has other thoughts on this.

According to a report from Mashable, Vic Gundotra, Google's senior vice president of social business, and Bradley Horowitz, Google+'s vice president of product, said Google+ may be social, but it's more than that. Instead of a social network, Google+ is an upgrade to all Google products.

"Google+ is just an upgrade to Google," Gundotra told Mashable. "People have a hard time understanding that. I think they like to compare us with other social competitors, and they see us through that lens instead of really seeing what's happening: Google is taking its amazing products, and by bringing them together, they just become more awesome."

Google declined to comment. The company has been saying since last fall that Google+ will be woven into all of its products.

Speaking on an earnings call last October, Google co-founder and CEO Larry Page said he wants to "transform the overall Google experience" with Google+.

"This means baking identity and sharing into all of our products so that we build a real relationship with our users," Page added. "Sharing on the Web will be like sharing in real life across all your stuff."

And that's what Google started to do. Soon after Page made that statement, Google began integrating Google+ with Google Apps, the company's cloud-based office suite.

While Google+ is expected to be used across Google's product portfolio, does that mean it's still not a social network?

No, not at all, according to Dan Olds, an analyst at Gabriel Consulting Group.

Originally published on Computerworld |  Click here to read the original story.
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