Google+ on Android is amazing. It has a feature called “Nearby” that lets you see a public stream of messages that are occuring near your GPS Location. I haven’t been able to find this feature on the web version (for obvious reasons I am guessing).
Google Latitude used Google Buzz to pull this off, but it was much more difficult to do. You could only do it from Google Maps, and for a while only from your phone, and you would have to navigate over chat bubbles on the map to click and see them. There was also no real ability to follow the person from that menu and it was just tedious to use, although cool. The way it worked also changed frequently without word, or at least an easy way to get to some update notes.
The big problem with Buzz + Latidude is that it was 2 apps, and 2 apps most people don’t understand, so it kinda went the way of Google Wave. Without publicity and ease of use it just wont work. Google+ is a great step toward that usability. It is simple, clean and makes sense very quickly.
This has already helped me! I started adding people talking nearby that looked like they were in tech and already found a designer I may be interested in commisioning. The applications here are pretty endless for those seeking or providing services.
They also seem to have a check in feature similar to Foursquare for the mobile apps, that may make sharing info about places easier, though I think we need a “stream” per location rather than just overall nearby.
So far I am rather Impressed with Google+. especially with it’s integration into Gmail. Being able to check updates and respond in the same window that I am always in is very helpful!
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