Better Video Integration Just The Latest Google+ Feature
It is now easier than ever to access YouTube videos right from the comfort of your Google+ profile. this is good news for folks who have a hankering for YouTube videos, but another yawn for folks who don’t.
As Google+ slowly creeps past the 40 million users mark a more clear picture is beginning to emerge about just what it is meant to be. Based on this, calling it a social media rival to Facebook seems a little naive, because it clearly is not moving in that direction. It strikes me that the purpose of Google+ is anything but being a social media platform. More like a Google platform–an umbrella under which all the existing Google features can nestle, snug as bugs in a rug.
If you use YouTube, you can use it through Google+. If you use Blogger, you can use it through Google+. In fact, every Google feature is being gradually integrated into Google+, making it easier for users to access all the existing Google features from one place. This is a great idea for Google which has suffered in the past from a network which was too far-flung and not well integrated. this umbrella-like structure is also great for anyone who uses all the different Google features which now exist. Create a Google+ account and you have easier access than ever before.
But will it attract new users? That’s a good question. Right now it appears that only people who use Google products will see a definite gain from using Google+. Everyone else will come expecting a new social media experience and find themselves inundated with Google products they didn’t want before and likely don’t want now.
Will Google+ change course and start pushing its social features? Possibly. Does that really matter? Not in my opinion. Their idea (at least I think it’s their idea) of uniting more people under the Google+ umbrella to make using their wide assortment of accessories easier might just drive more people to using their other products. This would obviously lead to more Google+ users as well.
Whatever their long term plans, with 40 million users in less than 4 months they are clearly working from a good position.
There is now a permanent YouTube icon on the main Profile page of Google+. Located on the upper right-hand corner of the page, the icon slides open when users hover over it with their cursor, displaying a search box.
People can then run any query and a separate window pops up with a pre-configured playlist of video clips related to the search term. The first video on the list starts playing automatically in the upper half of the page, above the list of clips.
The videos are chosen algorithmically by Google. There are buttons on the interface of this page for people to “+1” the clip that’s playing and share it with others using the Google+ Circles feature.
People with whom videos are shared can not only play back the clips but also see a playlist of related videos, Google said Thursday in a blog post.
In addition, the company is rolling out features to extend Google+’s reach and presence beyond the Google domain with two new extensions for the Chrome browser.
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