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Can Google+ Take Facebook’s Throne? W

hen first went online in February 2004, few realised what it would eventually turn into, or its massive potential as a way to bring people together. Just over seven years later and Facebook is now the number one most visited website in the world , having clocked up a total of over 910 Trillion page views and a user database of 750 million people in its short lifespan. Due to the massive success of the site and others such as Twitter and Myspace, it was only a matter of time before Google responded with their own interpretation of the social networking phenomenon and as of June 2011 they are calling it Google+ (G+).

The project is still classed as in development, as Google are currently testing the site with a number of invited users all over the age of 18. Regardless of this and the fact that it is yet to be completely opened to the public, the G+ project has already attracted 25 million unique users , boasting a growth rate much larger than any other competing social networking sites. Whether or not this is a glimpse at the future success of G+ is yet to be seen, but the preliminary figures do look promising.

So what is different about Google+? So far it looks as if Google isn’t planning to launch an independent website for G+, rather it will be added onto the menu bar of Google’s homepage as an extended feature of the original search engine, similar to Google Mail. Users who have existing Picasa accounts will also be able to synchronise any existing photos that they have previously uploaded to their G+ profile, making it much easier to share albums with your friends.

The G+ project has already attracted 25 million unique users

One of the most distinct differences about G+ from Facebook is the design and concept of the friends system. When you want to send a message to several people on Facebook then you have to individually search on each name, where as with G+ you can simply choose a particular social group and send the same message to all of them, organising a Saturday night with school friends for example. This is done through the “Circles” part of the site that allows the user to place individual contacts into social groups of their own choice, therefore keeping your entire network of contacts much more organised and easier to navigate through. The “Huddle” application also lets you send text messages to individual “Circles”

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