The same estimate that pegs Google+ membership at 10 million says it should be up to 20 million by this weekend. It’s likely safe to assume that a lot of those early adopters, who scored increasingly available invites, are going there to check it out, sniff around, see what it’s all about. If they don’t find much, those membership numbers could plunge and Google could be left with another weird product no one really uses, like Wave or Buzz.
We asked some of our listeners and Twitter followers what they’ve been using Google+ for, and we got a pretty wide variety of answers:
Brian PJ Cronin: It’s looking like because of the smooth interface/lack of character limit, it’s easier than Twitter for sharing news items and and then having a thorough and nuanced discussion of the points raised instead of trying to reduce everything to a soundbite.
Nick Decker: I’m using it to see how other people are using it.
Callan: I joined fbook very early, then persuaded my friends to join because I hated the clutter of myspace. Fb is now equally cluttered – ads/groups/spam etc. I will attempt to make another transition to G+, whether it replaces fbook will depend entirely on the collaborative mood of my mates.
We talk to David Weinberger of the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard. He says the big value of Google+ is the Circles feature. Whereas on Facebook you have to say everything you want to say to everyone you know, Circles lets you keep the spheres of your life separate. David has enjoyed sharing some information with research colleagues, other stuff just with personal friends, other stuff with family.
We also talk with Mathew Ingram, senior writer for Giga Om. He says that Google+ should be able to integrate with a lot of services Google already offers, like Gmail or YouTube. But, he cautions, we haven’t seen that yet.
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