Android Community 101: Google+, Circles, Huddle, Sparks, Hangouts, and Mobile Functionality

June 28, 2011
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Today Vic Gundotra revealed the many ways Google will be working in the social landscape in the very near future through a project entitled Google+. In many ways this is what groups like Facebook, Twitter, and even the dying MySpace have been trying to do for many years now, Google now appearing to take what they call a "broken" sharing system online and fixing it with a series of projects, each of them with a "+" in the title. All of this begins with the very recently rounded-up Circles legend yours truly spoke about on SlashGear. Behold the round futuristic landscape!

Below you'll see the first video, a sort of basic and general look at how this whole project is going to play out. With each of the smaller projects here comes a video as well, made by Google. Smart of them to create such videos so that the reporters don't mess it all up with their words. Google you cads!

+Circles

This part of the project separates you from your friends. Sounds terrible! But it's not what you think. Much in the opposite way that Facebook places you in a sort of single group unless you take an extra few steps to separate your sharing into who can and cannot see, +Circles allows you to create circles of people into which you'll be able to share the media and text you'd like to share. Have a look at the following video, it makes this rather simple concept into a really ohh and ahh sort of deal:

+Sparks

What this element does is "break the ice" between you and other prospective friends and associates on the internet. Interests can be added to your account via an Add Interest button. Once you've got an interest added, that being any topic you want, (possibly even Adult or otherwise inappropriate for the general public content, we'll just have to see,) in just above 40 languages - this number current to the time this post was posted. You'll share to the subject you like. It's emphasized that the things you share, you share because you are passionate about them, not because you think other people will like them. Sound true to you?

+Hangouts

This is very much the Google video sort of situation we've been waiting for, it appears, with a sort of chatroom being set up for your friends and associates at any given time, a main video sitting on top with several smaller ones below, or two cameras side by side, everyone just hanging out. While this may seem very much like video chat sites like TinyChat and StickAM out there today, it appears that Google's cleaned up approach will do away with all the evil, if you know what I mean.

+Mobile

Yes indeed, there will be an Android element here. Though perhaps, it seems, Google+ wont be limited to Android (because that'd be just silly,) and will focus on GPS, cameras (both video and photo), and messaging. Included in this is what Google calls "+Location, Location, Location" or more than likely just Location, this surrounding the fact that you can tag every bit of your content with your literal GPS location.

You'll also be able to upload instantly with a deal called Instant Upload. This functionality takes every photo you snap and adds them "instantly" to the cloud - aka accessible by you from anywhere you're able to sign in to your Google+ account. Will this incur large amounts of data costs on you through your carrier? We're thinking yes. Get those unlimited data plans ready! Of course, on the other hand, all of this is optional.

+Huddle

Tied directly to your Circles, Huddle will allow you to send out messages that will then be accessible by everyone in the circle you sent it to. Rather simple, rather amazing if it truly does include photos and videos down the line.

All of this, says Google, comes down to +You. You've got to test this stuff out, get some invites to the program, and download the apps. Currently there's a bit of the ol Google+ app in the market and it comes automatically with another app by the name of, you guessed it, +Huddle, but neither are working unless you've been invited to the Beta. We'll be testing all of this out asap- and I say this at the moment I post this on June 28th, and we'll have hands-on with all of it for you soon!


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