Google+ is a fast-growing social network, with 540 million active users each month and more than 1.5 billion photos uploaded every week. Google just revealed some updates and enhancements as their way of saying thank you to the growing community.
Hangouts Enhancements and New Features
You can now schedule your Hangouts on Air, promote them with a dedicated watch page, and moderate the conversation through the new Control Room. These are definitely useful features if you’re an online marketer or Hangout host.
This is what the Hangout scheduling feature and your video watch page look like. (Original images from Search Engine Watch)
Google has also enhanced Hangouts for Android devices, which now supports SMS and location sharing, and plays animated gifs inline. They’ve also significantly improved video calling, with videos appearing full-screen across desktop computers and mobile devices, with automatic webcam lighting fixes and adjustments.
A before and after preview of the new lighting enhancements for video calling (Images from Google’s official blog)
Google announced several new features to improve photo storage, organization, editing, and sharing:
- Automated backups and background sync for Google+ on iOS are coming soon
- Google+ photo search now recognizes “over a thousand different objects”, allowing you to type what you’re looking for to find any matching items in your uploaded photos.
- You can now increase or decrease Auto Enhance manually, or choose to exempt entire albums from auto enhancing.
- A new filter, HDR Scape, has been added to Snapseed.
- Analog Efex Pro, a new filter that features “classic cameras and processing methods,” has been added to the premium Nik Collection.
Auto Awesome Improvements
Auto Awesome has always made it easier for Google+ users to create short movies, panoramas, or merged images using photos and videos. Google has added three new features to Auto Awesome:
Action allows you to create strobe-effect photographs out of action shots (such as a video of you skateboarding with a friend).
Eraser allows you to erase moving elements (like people or cars) that get in your shot’s way from a sequence of photos
Movie automatically creates highlight reels out of your photos and videos, complete with effects, transitions and a soundtrack. You can also continue editing and customizing the movie, or share it as is.
Google+ should be part of any marketer or search engine optimization specialist’s expertise. Keep checking our blog or talk to us to read about the latest Google+ news, or have us optimize your company’s Google+ page.