Amazing, since it hasn't even been officially released to the masses!!
I was itching for an invite to 'have a look' and a Twitter friend kindly obliged.
It's taken some getting used to.
What am I saying - it's taking some getting used to; but it dawned on me the other morning that I didn't go straight to facebook, to see what's happening. My first port of call was Google+.
One of the big benefits are in what Google has called "Circles". The ability to create what are, essentially, lists of different people, so it's possible to target updates, comments and discussions, to relevant parties.
It's clear, crisp and fresh.
For example, I have Circles for my Family, Real Life Friends, my Twitter Friends and Work colleagues. You could have Circles of many different categories, and you can have people across multiple Circles. It's so easy to drag and drop names around. I'm still 'playing' with getting the right people in the right place...
Conversations are at the heart of Google+, but one huge benefit is the control you have over who sees what. Now that you have Circles, you can have a one-to-one chat with someone, include more people in a discussion; or throw it open to the world.
Oh - and if you have an Android handset, by all accounts, the Google+ app is excellent. I can't vouch for it. However the mobile version of the site, on iPhone and iPad, will leave users wanting; as with BlackBerry (although my PlayBook does manage very well with the full, desktop version).
Instant messaging is available with integration to Google Chat; and with Google Hangouts, you can also video chat with up to 10 other people at at time - great for families, friends, and even businesses for video conferencing.
Finally - the ability to add photos to your online album, and share them with certain people.
Like I mentioned earlier, on Google+ you can share what you want, with who you want; so if you only want certain people to see your photos of a night out - you have the control.
Whether publicly, a group of people, or just one person. The choice is yours.
After the video, you can read about my new 'experiment'.
So; from today, and for a trial period (although, who knows, it could become permanent) I will be leaving the facebook world behind me!
I say this with a few caveats:
- My Blog and I will still be published on Facebook- so you can still get your dose of my thoughts etc; but if you haven't 'Liked' my page, this could be the last post you read.
- My Foursquare updates will continue - mainly because they are automated. And I know you like to know if I get my morning coffee!
- I will react and respond to messages - I won't ignore you.
- I won't be updating my status, and I won't be commenting (or liking) any statuses.
- I won't be chatting either - If you want to chat; come on over to Google+ (or BBM or text me!)
No-one in the house thinks I can do this!
I can and I will...
At the moment, you can join Google+ by invitation. Over the next few days you may start to receive messages that I've added you to a Circle. Don't be shy. It costs nothing to look, and you may be pleasantly surprised.
I'm also still on Twitter, so you can follow me there @doonytime
So - Goodbye facebook; or should that be à bientôt.