Google Plus is a brand new social network from Google which was released a couple of weeks ago on a field trial basis. You need an invitation to join, but hopefully Google will open it for public use within a few weeks from now.
In our earlier article, we discussed some of the basic features of Google Plus and what separates it from other social sites – e.g Facebook. In addition to circles and hangouts, here are a couple of more features of Plus which we think you’ll enjoy using once you have an account.
Google Plus Huddles
Huddles in Google Plus are nothing more than group chat – only available when you are logged into Google Plus from your mobile device or using the Google Plus Android application. Google has implemented the huddles feature to make sure it’s fast and easy to communicate with multiple friends from your phone. When you are using your computer, you can use Gmail chat to send instant messages to friends, which comes with voice and video chat by default.
Here is how the huddle interface of Google Plus looks on my Android:
Using Huddles in Google Plus is pretty easy – all you have to do is click the “Huddles” option and invite your friends with whom you want to huddle with. You can invite multiple friends in a single huddle and the huddle will start whenever any one friend joins the huddle. Other friends will be able to send messages when they join, so you never lose earlier messages. This is a great way to start a timeless conversation and carry it forward for a few days – maybe weeks or months.
To learn more how huddles work, watch the official video from Google here.
Instant Upload Of Photos
When you are browsing the web from your mobile, you want to do things as fast as possible and in fewer steps. Sharing photos with Google Plus friends is made instant, thanks to the “Instant upload” feature of Google Plus android application.
When your smartphone is connected to the Internet and you take a photo using the camera, the Google Plus Android app will automatically upload the photo to your Google Plus profile. The photo will be saved in draft mode and you can just click the photo and share it with your friends.
There is no need to upload photos manually or reupload the same photos because of a lagging internet connection. Take your snap and forget about it – the app will do the rest.
Instant upload of photos can be controlled from the app settings, and you can turn it off if you are not comfortable using it. An advantage of instant uploads is that all my photos that were taken from my mobile are stored and accessible from my Google Plus account, so I can see them when I don’t have the phone with me. Neat!
To learn how instant uploads of photos work, watch this short video from Google.
Sparks In Google Plus
Do you want to keep an eye on breaking news and developements happening in your industry? Enter Google Plus sparks – a great way to subscribe to news, articles and updates from your favorite sites, directly on your Google plus account. These updates are real time in nature and work the same way as Google News and Google Reader does.
Whether its cutting edge fashion, political news, sports updates or news about your favorite Pop singer, there is a unique “spark” for each of them. When you have subscribed to a spark, discovering interesting and happening news about the things you care about becomes a lot more easy and instantaneous.