Google has released a new update for the Google+ application, despite the fact the app is going away soon, at least the consumer version of the app. This is not the first update that Google released since it announced that it plans to kill the service, however, which makes things even more interesting.
This new update came with one entry in the changelog, “Performance enhancements and bug fixes”. As you can see, the description is not exactly specific, but it seems like Google simply made some improvements under the hood, without making any new features or anything available to consumers, which makes sense. These are probably mostly security and bug fixes, though one would expect the company to stop updating the app altogether following its announcement that Google+ is going away.
At first, Google announced that Google+ will be completely off-limits to consumers by August 2019, but considering a second security breach was spotted not long after that announcement, the company decided to speed up Google+’s demise, so the new “execution” date had been set for April.
So, Google is basically updating an app a month before it kills it off, presuming that the app will be completely removed from the Play Store, and a separate one will be available for enterprise use… but it remains to be seen. If Google plans to keep this specific app in the Play Store, despite the fact it will no longer be available to consumers, then these updates kinda make sense, but that probably won’t happen.
When asked why Google+ is getting the axe, Google basically said that the service is not worth maintaining, as it did not attract enough users. On top of that, engagement of those users who actually actively use the service is not all that high, not to mention that Google’s announcement came following the discovery of a security breach.
Google+ is not the only service Google decided to axe this, as Inbox is going away as well. Google announced that Inbox will cease to exist come March 2019, which means that it will be removed sometime this month. The app is still available in the Play Store, and the service is still up, at least at the time of writing this article.
Google+ was a rather popular social media service in some circles, as it did have a considerable following. So much so, that users started signing a petition following Google’s announcement, but that didn’t do much good, at least until now. There is, of course, still time for Google to change its mind, but that almost certainly will not happen, despite the fact an update actually landed for the app recently.
The demise of Google+ will leave more room to breathe for other social media networks, including two major players out there, Twitter and Facebook. Neither of those two social media networks felt the pressure of Google+, as Google’s social media network never came close in popularity, but a chunk of Google+ users will probably migrate to either Twitter or Facebook, if they haven’t already.