Google+ now offers users the ability to share their Circles of contacts. The social network has also seen a lot of traction in the last week since the open beta launched.
Google+, which opened to public beta one week ago today,
has gotten shared circles, one of the social network's most heavily requested
Google+ launched to open beta Sept. 20
, expanding from limited field test to
let anybody join the network that would challenge Facebook. Google
added the ability for users to search Google+ for people and posts, as well as
. The company also added several improvements to its Hangouts group
video conferencing application.
Now users can share their Circles, the groups of friends,
colleagues and other contacts users create manually, simply by clicking two
buttons. For example, a user who tends a Circle of Harry Potter fans can click
on that Circle from their Circles page and click "share."
Users may choose to add a comment to the shared Circle
post explaining what the Circle is all about and why they chose to share it.
The cool part is that Google+ users connected to the user doing the sharing can
then pick and choose who to add to new or existing circles.
When users share a Circle, they're only sharing members
in the Circle as of the time it's shared. Users added after a Circle has been
shared will not be included, unless of course a user opts to share the Circle
Moreover, noted Google+ engineer Owen Prater, users are
only sharing its members at that time. Also, the circle name is always private
to the person who share it, and any changes they make afterwards are kept
private as well.
"We hope this new feature helps you share and find
lots of great content in Google+, while still giving you important controls
over how you read and share," Prater said on Google+, where he provides a demo video of shared Circles
The new feature should be a hit among the more social
Google+ users, but not so much more private folks. It also comes as Google+
membership is fairly exploding.
Ancestry.com Founder Paul Allen estimated late last week that Google+ might
have over 43 million users
Meanwhile, HitWise crunched some numbers after Google+ went public
and said the
Website saw "a massive spike in market share of visits for the site, with
a 1269 percent growth from the week ending September 17th to the week of
September 24th." The site also received nearly 15 million total U.S.
visits last week.