Google IO 22

Google+ Gets a Redesign, Brings Cards Interface, Auto Hashtags, and Plenty More

May 15, 2013 - Written By Alexander Maxham

Vic Gundotra took the stage today to introduce us to plenty of new features for Google+. This includes a new redesign that looks fairly similar to Pinterest, except it’s a social network you can use. They also announced that there are 390 million monthly active users over the web and 190 million directly on the stream.

These changes on the Google+ stream will be pretty familiar to those using the Android and iOS apps, but they have a few more changes. They’ve added a new item to the stream, which they’ve given it a 3-column stream. Google+ also loses the Twitter and Facebook-esque feed. Instead there’s a multi-column feed that let’s you see things quicker and puts videos and images right in your face.

googleplus11

Above you can see the new version Google+ on the web, and down below is the older version or the version you used this morning.

plusnow

They’ve also changed up the toolbar, making it simplified. It looks pretty similar to the toolbar you’ll see on search and other property. The days of left-handed navigation is now gone.

In addition, you’ll notice that pieces of content in your stream stand out much more. And that is because they are “cards”. Another one of the new features in Google+ is that whenever you post a new piece of content, it will automatically get a hashtag. You can also remove that, but GOogle’s massive processing power goes to work to try and categorize all of the content being share, as shown below on this San Francisco Giants post:

googleplushashtag

You can click that hashtag and the card will flip allowing you to discover similar content. ANother example of how this new feature works is in this picture of the Eiffel Tower. As you can see there is no text within the post that stated the origin of the photo, but Google was able to figure out what it was and giving it the tag of #EiffelTower.

googleplusphoto

Content with photos and videos, you’ll notice they get the same treatment as on mobile. Which means it’ll span across multiple columns.

googleplusvideo

The Google+ team has also added some other animations like bounce when you share someone’s post. These are all animations that the apps already do. So you can think of it as using the tablet or phone version of the Google+ app on the desktop. It looks pretty great. Vic said we have over 40 new features coming to Google+ later today. Including changes to Photos which we’ll be detailing later today.

This redesign should be rolling out later today, and I don’t know about you, but I’m very anxious to check it out.