Google has recently announced an interesting strategy change regarding its nearly comatose Google+ social network.
Previously, Google forced anyone who wanted to do things like share content, communicate with contacts, or create a YouTube channel to sign up for an account on the social network.
But in a blog post, Google’s Bradley Horowitz, vice president of streams, photos, and sharing, said that requirement will soon change:
People have told us that accessing all of their Google stuff with one account makes life a whole lot easier. But we’ve also heard that it doesn’t make sense for your Google+ profile to be your identity in all the other Google products you use.
So in the coming months, a Google Account will be all you’ll need to share content, communicate with contacts, create a YouTube channel and more, all across Google. YouTube will be one of the first products to make this change, and you can learn more on their blog. As always, your underlying Google Account won’t be searchable or followable, unlike public Google+ profiles. And for people who already created Google+ profiles but don’t plan to use Google+ itself, we’ll offer better options for managing and removing those public profiles.
That’s definitely great news, especially for users who want to remove their public profiles. As Horowitz relayed, Google account information isn’t searchable and should offer more privacy to users.
In a follow-up post on Google+, Horowitz asserted that the social network isn’t going away but will instead be part of an overall social strategy. As you probably remember, earlier this year, Google broke out the well-received Photos functionality of the social network into its own standalone site and app.
Even though I signed up for a Google+ account, I can’t remember the last time I willingly surfed over to the social network. And I suspect I’m far from the only one.