It looks like days are numbered for Google+.
The moment has finally come. After years of the Internet flipping its hair and rolling its eyes in a collective gesture of, “Stop trying to make Google+ happen,” Google has finally taken note.
Google announced on Monday that users would no longer need a Google+ account to login to YouTube or any other Google-owned websites. Moving forward, a Google will be the only credentials necessary to use these apps and services, as opposed to being linked to the Google+ social network.
Once lauded as the next major competitor to Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn, Google+ has never reached an optimum number of users for the mainstream social media world to even acknowledge its presence, much less use it on an everyday basis. Seemingly acknowledging the memo, Google has been rolling out a series of changes to the network in recent months (such as breaking up the newsfeed into Streams and Photos last March) that may be indication of an actual phase-out.
In a recent article The Economic Times cited that many people actually use Google+ in order to utilize Gmail, Google Drive and other Google apps, but no one is using it as an actual social network to engage with friends, receive news updates or define a personal brand.
The reasons for the network’s failure results in an intricate web of finger-pointing, with the blame shifting from Google+ too closely resembling Facebook, to the departure of Google+ point person Vic Gundotra a year ago. There was no succession plan for Gundotra, one former Googler told TET.
Regardless of the reasons the network eventually failed, the fact that Google+ never found solid footing within the social media landscape remains at the forefront of users’ minds. There’s no word yet on any actual plans to axe, but what do you think: would your life go on completely undisturbed if Google+ disappeared tomorrow, or would it leave a hole in your social media repertoire? Share your thoughts in the Comment section below!