Gans on Google+
| Nicolai Foss |
I have been using Google + for about a week now. I am unimpressed, and I think I will remain unimpressed. Quite simply, it doesn’t do a lot for me. On his HBR blog, the always thoughtful Joshua Gans points out that because Google+ is a network technology it must build sufficient installed base. However, G+ may face difficulties doing just that, because it offers users rather little extra problem-solving value compared to the existing alternatives:
Facebook provides “hyper-local news,” allowing people to broadcast news, opinions, and interests to their social circle in a way that feels authentic. Twitter, because it is essentially public and open, delivers news fast and also permits users to follow famous or interesting individuals.
Google+ does both of these things in one. But because the problems are already solved separately, then Google+ only solves the increment: you can view private and public content on the one “page.” To be sure, some harmonization across content platforms can be valuable to consumers. But Google+ is only adding the increment and not the whole lot. So while it might be argued that if Google+ happened five years ago, its technical implementation might have made it a clear winner, that is not the world we find ourselves in now.