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Google+ (pronounced and sometimes written as Google Plus) is a multilingual social networking and identity service owned and operated by Google Inc. It is the second-largest social networking site in the world, having surpassed Twitter in January 2013. It has approximately 359 million active users. As of May 2013, it had a total of 500 million registered users, of whom 235 million are active in a given month.Google has described Google+ as a "social layer" that enhances many of its online properties, unlike conventional social networks generally accessed through a single website.

                                     History

Creation

Google launched the Google+ service as an invitation-only "field test" on June 28, 2011,but soon suspended early invites due to an "insane demand" for new accounts. On August 6, each Google+ member had 150 invitations to give out until September 20, 2011, when Google+ opened to everyone 18 years of age or older without the need for an invitation.It was opened for a younger age group (13 years or older in US and most countries, 14 or older in South Korea and Spain, 16 or older in the Netherlands) on January 26, 2012. Google+ is available as a website and on mobile devices.
Before the launch, Google referred to Google+ as Google Circles, a name alluding to its emphasis on organising friendship information. Google+ is considered the company's fourth foray into social networking, following Google Buzz (launched 2010, retired in 2011), Google Friend Connect (launched 2008, retired by March 1, 2012) and Orkut (launched in 2004, as of 2013 operated entirely by subsidiary Google Brazil). Sources such as The New York Times have declared it Google's biggest attempt to rival the social network Facebook,which has over 1 billion users.

Growth

In November 2011, Google+ was integrated into the account creation process for other Google services, such as Google Mail.Google+ integrates social services such as Google Profiles, and initially introduced new services identified as Circles, Hangouts and Sparks.According to independent analysis of its growth in December 2011, the site was adding an estimated number of 625,000 new users a day, which may total 400 million members by the end of 2012. However, on February 28, 2012 Todd Wasserman from Mashable reported Google+ users are only spending 3.3 minutes monthly on Google+ which is a downward trend from 4.8 minutes in December and 5.1 minutes in November compared to Facebook users spending 7.5 hours using Facebook monthly.
On July 14, 2011, Google announced that Google+ had reached 10 million users just two weeks after the launch of a "limited" trial phase. After four weeks in operation, it had reached 25 million unique visitors. Based on ComScore, the biggest market was the United States followed by India.In October 2011, the service reached 40 million users, according to Larry Page; by the end of the year Google+ had 90 million users.
In just under a day in July 2011, the Google+ iPhone app became the most popular free application in the Apple App Store.
On May 14, 2013 a new version of Google+ was introduced.

                                User base

Early adopters of Google+ in mid-2011 were mostly male (71.24%), and the dominant age bracket (35%) was between 25 and 34.
An August 2011 survey estimated that 13% of U.S. adults have joined Google+; it was projected to have 22% of U.S. adults in a year.
On January 26, 2012, Google opened Google+ to teenagers. The age limit had previously been 18, but Google Vice President for Product Management Bradley Horowitz announced on Google+ that users as young as 13 would be allowed.
According to Experian Hitwise, an Internet metrics firm, the number of U.S. visits to Google+ surpassed 49 million during the one-month period ending December 11, 2011, a 55% increase from the one-month period ending November 11, 2011.

                           Technologies

According to Joseph Smarr, one of the Google+ team's technical leads, Google+ is a typical Google web application: it uses Java servlets for the server code and JavaScript for the browser-side of the UI, largely built with Google's Closure framework, including the JavaScript compiler and the template system. They use the HTML5 History API to maintain good-looking URLs in modern browsers despite the AJAX app. To achieve fast response times Google often renders the Closure templates on the server side before any JavaScript is loaded; then the JavaScript finds the right DOM nodes, hooks up event handlers, etc. The back ends are built mostly on top of BigTable and Colossus/GFS, and other common Google technologies such as MapReduce.

                           Academic research

Since Google+ was launched, it has attracted attention in academic research. For instance, researchers from UC Berkeley crawled about 80 daily snapshots of Google+ and studied its early evolution. They found Google+'s early evolution process can be roughly divided into three phases. Moreover, they found that user attributes (e.g., school, major, employer, etc.) have significant impact on Google+'s social structure and evolution.


Nipun Tyagi. Powered by Blogger.