Google+ is the search giant’s response to Facebook’s recent raise as the most visited site in the world. The tools aim to make the web experience of Google account users a little bit more like that offered by Facebook. The problem is, however, that there is no compelling reason to switch from Facebook or from other, established social media tools, to what Google has to offer.
From what I can tell, Google+ is several different social products rolled into one, an amalgam that currently lacks much coherence or any compelling reason for participation. Among its many parts is a stream of your friends’ updates—pretty much the same kind of thing you see on Twitter or Facebook. Then there’s Huddle, a group chat system, which is like any number of other group chat systems online. There’s also a snappy video chat feature, called Hangout. And, most important of all, there’s Circles, which is a way to segregate your friends into discrete groups. For instance, you can have a circle of work friends, a circle of college buddies, a knitting circle, and a circle of jerks. (Who could resist?)