Google+ holiday updates
Just in time for the holidays, Google+ is offering product improvements to users in hopes of improving their social network. Google is wont to release product improvements in small batches rather than all at once not only so that users can adjust to small changes over time, but also because in a world of diminishing attention spans and a 24 hour news cycle, short and sweet reigns and improves brand mentions and buzz exponentially rather than a bulk update.
In the spirit of improvement, Google+ first announced that users can improve their stream with a form of volume control by increasing or decreasing the amount of updates you get from your circles with a simple slider mechanism as shown in the video above. If your college buddies that you have connected with on Google+ are just too noisy or unprofessional and you are really there to connect with clients, make your college circle more quiet and clients circle more prevalent with a simple slide of a button.
Notifications have gotten a face lift; now rather than having to go through a post to review your notification, you get a preview in the notifications box. Now, rather than seeing “Betty White +1’d your post,” you will see “Betty White +1’d Top 5 ways to grow muscles overnight.”
Below is how the new notifications panel appears for users which is much easier to read than the former design:
Google+ Lightbox improvements
Although it was already beautiful, the Lightbox for photos now allows images to expand to fill your whole screen and comments fade in and out on pictures. Tagging has been added and when you hover over someone who has been tagged, the entire picture goes dark, except the tagged person so you can more easily isolate them in a photo. Now, there is a tile view at the bottom of the photo viewer that allows for ease of navigation.
Bradley Horowitz, Vice President of Product, Google+ said in a statement, “Some of these were on nearly everyone’s wishlist… and some we hope will be welcome surprises. These features will be rolling out over the next couple of days, and we hope you’ll find them useful this holiday season and beyond.”