Google+ Gets A Bunch Of New Features

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Google announced the release of a slew of new Google+ features today. Guy Kawasaki must be ecstatic.

Google VP of Engineering Dave Besbris announced them in a Google+ post pointing to a page on the Google+ Project.

For Android, Google has added mobile profile editing, an easier way to author content, and a "subtle" notice when there's new content to read. You can also now subscribe to mobile notifications from specific circles, and interact with Google+ Communities from your phone or tablet.

Google launched Google+ Communities last week. They're essentially Google's answer to Facebook Groups. More on that here.

Easier To Author Content

Subscribe To Circles

Android Communities

Also on Android, Google has added full-size backups of photos (up to 5GB), in addition to the standard-sized option, which is unlimited free storage at 2048px. This can be used by turning on Intant Upload. Android 4.2 users will be able to create 360-degree panoramas with Google Photosphere, but users of older versions of Android (Froyo and up) can view them in the stream.

Photosphere in the stream

Android users also get animated GIFs, birthday reminders and a lock screen widget.

Google Now Birthdays

Google Lockscreen Widget

For Events, users can send messages to specific guests and see who has opened the invitations. Users can also invite people through Google+ or by copying the URL of the event into an email or IM, and guests can RSVP with the number of people they're bringing. They've also added a new event duplication feature, in case you want to do the same thing multiple times. It will automatically add the details, so you don't have to set them up every time.

Duplicate Events

Going forward, you will now only need about 150 KB of bandwidth to use be in a Hangout. For Hangouts On Air, Google will now automatically hide the filmstrip of faces, and expand the video to fill the entire feed when you're the only one participating.

The app is available in Google Play, where other new features listed include: support for time zones in events, and mood expression (there's actually screen caps of this in the initial post).

Update: Besbris announced some new stuff for iOS users too:

On iOS, our new version lets you swipe through photo albums inline; you can tap once to view photos in all their glory; and the iPhone app now applies a subtle pan-zoom-scale effect to pictures in the stream. You'll also see new conversation cards that really shine a light on your content—from longer snippets to bigger photos to comments that slide in beneath each post.

Chris Crum
Chris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow Chris on Twitter, on StumbleUpon, on Pinterest and/or on Google: +Chris Crum.

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