In order for Google+ to supplant Facebook, it will have to appeal to at least one crucial segment of the online population – college students.
In dorm rooms across the country and much of the world, kids are updating messages on social networks and pretty much “hooked into” cyberspace all day and night. It is this demography that initially launched Facebook’s extraordinary growth – and now Google+ will have to likewise, or perhaps even do better.
According to a report on CNN, the campus crowd is particularly excited by Google+’s unique aspects like the detailed privacy controls of Circles and the hangout group video chat-room.
The ability to have more control over who sees my profile and activity is certainly a major plus, Harsh Sinha, a finance and computer science major at New York University, told CNN. It addresses a big concern.
Another Google fan Rachel Kraus, a graduate of Stanford University, told CNN she like the privacy features Google provides,
I saw Facebook and Twitter as marketing tools, not social networks for my benefit, she said. But I joined Google+ immediately because I trust that Google makes its products for the benefit of Internet consumers. Even the data they give away seems unobtrusive, and actually makes being on the Internet more efficient and specific to the kind of information I'm consuming.
Google+ may also represent a newer and improved (and streamlined) version of social media networks – the latest model in an ongoing evolution of a wildly popular product.
Now that we have all learned what a social network really is, and realized that it doesn't really help to have 1000+ friends, I look forward to starting afresh with Google+ Google+ by only adding the people that I regularly keep in contact with, said Kim Saloner, a student Stanford.
However, CNN notes, Facebook remains the powerful incumbent and will be difficult to replace.
Sinha said: Most people already have a Facebook that is well established. They need a reason to divide their time and online lives.
Similarly, Jenny Wales, another Stanford student, said Facebook is almost irreplaceable.
No matter how much better or different Google+ is, there is no replacement for the five years of people, photos and comments I have access to on Facebook, she said. I like that I can read about and relive those memories on Facebook.