Google+ app

If you're a Google+ user and reading this site, you probably checked out the big update to the Android app earlier this afternoon. We'd been waiting a couple weeks since a similar update went to iOS users, and many were less than impressed with today's changes. It is a big of a mess, especially when everyone was posting screen shots of how messy it was, and the text can be pretty difficult to read depending on any picture attached. It's a big change.

It has it's pluses (see what I did there) as well, the fly out menu is a nice touch, and when it's not being messy it's a beautiful look for picture sharing. I think it's a really good start, but still needs some attention. What about you guys? Liking it? Hating it? Let us know in tonight's poll.

 

Reader comments

Late-night poll: Are you liking the Google+ update?

62 Comments

I agree with you, I had the HTC One X and I took it back, It` slower than SGS2 too. I did pick the Galaxy Note and I love it.

Really? I found it to be pretty smooth on an SGS1 running ICS. It lags a bit, but I figured a more powerful phone like the SGS2 would fix that.

I really like the look but it brings an Android problem to the fore. Choppy scrolling is apparent even on the supposedly fast Galaxy Nexus. The application certainly needed an update, as aesthetic appeal can make all of the difference between an alright application and a fantastic one, but if it is too much for current phones to handle smoothly it may not have been a good idea.

I have a G Nex. I can see just the tiniest bit of choppiness. I don't see that ruining the experience by any means. I can see this perhaps being an issue on slower devices though.

I like the new look I just wish that if they were trying to unify the theme with ICS that they should have used blue instead of the red. Other than that I haven't really noticed anything unpleasant, not even this rumored scrolling lag on GNexuses.

I don't really agree. I like the fact that apps are using different colors, as long as they follow the ICS styling guidelines. Don't get me wrong, I love blue (actually my favorite combination of colors is black, white and blue) but I don't want them to overdo it. Look at the new evernote app; It's great, follows ICS styling, but it's main colors are green and white because that's evernote's symbol. It gives the app more identity.The same is applied for all of the apps, even google ones: Youtube = red, Movies = red, Google Play = green, orange, blue or red depending on what section you're in, etc.

Besides, only the stream uses red. If you go to any other tab the color will change based on the tab symbol.

I hate it because the Photos on the wall are all stretched!!! Its only when you click them and go inside the viewing gallery that they look the right size! What went wrong here???

It's an amazing UI. It varies off the path of most social apps and looks stunning on the GNex screen. What's not to like?

I agree...and I hate FB now. I still post everything on G+ though. It's 10x easier for pics and everything else to

I know!! I like google+ way more than Facebook. It's less cluttered, and has more functionality. Unfortunately, many people don't even realize that it exists.

I dunno. Its OK I guess, but Google Plus is not my primary network (and won't be until more people I know migrate over -- which could take YEARS). I find it a bit cluttered, but I've only spent a few minutes on it. I'm sure once I get used to it, it will be fine. My first impression was that it looked very cluttered. Too much going on, and not enough screen to hold it all. Maybe I need to un-install and re-install it or something.

It runs well on my GALAXY Note, but low res images are stretched to the point to where they look like poo; high res images look wonderful. I'm not sure how I feel just yet about being able to only see two posts at a time. All in all it is a pleasing update because I appreciate new and "free".

I like it I just wish I had more than 5 friends on it while I have over 500 Facebook friends. I like Google+ better but I want want to talk to friends on my social network. I wish more people would give it a try. I went trying to convince some of my friends to switch but that didn't work.

It feels smoother and more flipboard like.
I really like it.
If only I could get my friends to use G+.

I can see how this is starting to look a lot like their Google Currents app, could be an interface continuity check. which is good and I like it in that respect. It could use some performance tweaks.

I can say overall I like it. There's some things though I like better in the iOS version. First being rather than a fly out menu (which I think looks silly), iOS will take you to a full page with the various options and include your name and profile picture. Additionally, we have a refresh button in the Action Bar while iOS has swipe to refresh functionality.

Here's how I would've designed the app a little differently. Replace the fly out menu with a drop down list like in other Google made ICS apps. Add in swipe to refresh. Replace the refresh button in the Action Bar with the number of notifications. When this is pressed, a scrollable drop down list appears with all notifications. Finally, the white text over pictures and links can be hard to read. I would've put a darker background behind the text.

As a whole, the redesign is welcomed. There is no stopping Google from potentially fixing the shortcomings I mentioned above. Starting Hangouts now is so easy and I love how it mimics a phone call on my GNex when being invited to a Hangout. The subtle animation of posts flying into the Stream while scrolling is a nice touch. I wish more people I knew would try G+ as they really don't understand what they are missing when compared to facebook. I've recently been trying to be more active in the Nearby Stream as well as posts I find which are tailored to my interests. This has helped make G+ more fun and this update only serves to make me want to be on the service even more.

I disliked it when I saw it on my iPod Touch and I dislike it on my Samsung Fascinate. Google+ is not only a photo or video sharing website, the text is arguably the most important part of Google+. So it's disappointing to see that Google is now forcing users to have to click on the images if they want to read the entire posting, unless the posting is only a few words long. Instagram, a photo-sharing app, doesn't even force you to click on a posting to read its entire title as you're scrolling through your home feed, PLUS you can still read some of the comments per posting.

And then there's the fact that the new redesign just plain looks cluttered, has more lag, and the images take far too long to load. Google usually doesn't go for style over substance, so it's frustrating to see them go that route for this redesign.

"I'm on the fence" as I read the comments, open the app to see and look for features mentioned (fly out menu, lag, stretched photos, etc). I'm Team Android and so far it's looking O K on the MT4G. I say "O K" because my particular timeline happens to be photo/video intense for the first couple of posts. I do, however, agree with the person who said it looks cluttered and the person who commented about it being laggy. Agree, again, that imagery had to be clicked on to see the ENTIRE image. If images are showing up nice and neat on the cell, I am curious how huge (or not) they will show up on a tablet? Or can I only see this update on the cell? I only as as I am new to the Tab World.

I'll tinker with it more and see how it goes. It is neat looking but performance is what I need to really be spot on over the long haul.

So what was the big surprise that the android version was supposed to get as opposed to the ios version which came out weeks ago???

It really does look beautiful. It took about 15 minutes to train my eye and now I can breeze through content without having to take a moment and analyze the UI.

There's some rough edges though, could use a little more polish because some areas completely shine while others seem rushed. For example, and please correct me if this isn't G+ App, but image scaling seems really funky. There's a lot of blurry images whether it a few profile squares I noticed, or some images in What's Hot look really blurry much in line with the calling contact image pulled from +

tl;dr
Looks gorgeous, can't wait for future updates

I like the menu. The pictures are stretched and the words can be hard to see depending on the picture.

Yet another poll? Who is paying AC for these polls to be published here? As I see no reason AC would need to know whether we like the new G+ update or not. How on earth would this information be used in the daily workings of AC?

No wonder AC is so reluctant to ever talk bad about Google. I bet this is not the only thing AC get's paid directly from Google for.

This is nonsense. This was a big, potentially polarizing update to the app and I was curious about how the Android using community though about it. I'm sure I'm not the only one. What's wrong with a poll asking that? Why should it be a requirement for AC to NEED a poll for publishing it? Why do you care about that so much?

And the notion that AC is directly paid by Google to put this poll out is crazy talk. Suppose most people didn't like the update? Why would Google want to publicize that?

Here is yet another poll that was paid for by Google on this site.

http://www.androidcentral.com/late-night-poll-did-you-set-your-google-drive

I could give more examples of the Google paid polls on other sites as well but it appears I can not post links to any other Android site without the comment being blocked (way to stifle the conversations in your comments AC) for moderation. The polls on this site and others range from being paid by the carriers and the manufacturers as well. It is obvious that the information gleaned from these polls would be of zero use to these Android sites and of a lot more importance to Google the carriers and the manufacturers. Frankly it seems to be a little bit of a conflict of interest to be paid by the very companies you are supposed to be reporting unbiased news on. Unless of course most of the "news" and "reporting" on this and other Android sites are disguised as articles and paid for to help sell Android and it's hardware. Ask yourself when was the last time you saw a negative article about Google on this site?

It has become extremely obvious that Android Central and Droid Life are being paid for their polls and possibly other articles as well.

Just take a look at this "review" of myfitnesspal on AC. http://www.androidcentral.com/myfitnesspal-android-app-review
Then look at the comments. Almost all of the comments lost massive amounts of weight and just love the app. Frankly I had no idea there were so many formerly fat readers on AC. Also of note is that for such a long review not once did AC mention the ads in the app or that there is no paid version to get rid of them. That "review" was paid for by myfitnesspal. Frankly I doubt that Jared DiPane even wrote that article, as it was probably written by myfitnesspal in the "house" style of the writers.

I'm interested in knowing what other readers think regarding Android and Android related applications. AC, keep posting the polls... this guy is a troll with too much time on his hands.

Poopsies... If you actually believe the nonsense you posted, read alternate "unbiased" websites and stop complaining and mucking up the comments on the website you clearly don't like.

I make one critical comment on this article and now my account is automatically put into moderation before my comments can be posted. This is pretty sad state if we can not even talk about what we like and do not like on this site. So really how much more proof do you need, as one mention of AC being paid by Google and I can not post anymore. Looks to be a hot topic for AC to be so quick to silence me.

So everyone make sure to never criticize AC as they will make sure you can't do it again with the same account.

Truthfully, on my phone it looks great...on my Xoom, not so much. Very blurry on the bigger screen. I don't know if that's the case on all 10" devices...

I like the new look at it works well on my TBolt but not so well on my Prime. I hope they are working on a tablet optimization next. Even if they just create a decent horizontal view for the app, that would help how it looks on tablets.

Please quit randomly posting pictures of Phil everywhere, I'm starting to feel like I'm getting goatse'd.

Meh, I think it looks okay in the pictures , since I don't have it on my Atrix.
Personally, I don't use Google + or Facebook (even though I've accounts on both of em)

Aesthetic improvements are down to personal taste, so I'll just say I like how the G+ team has taken a big risk and redesigned the experience. I like it, and suggest some refinements:

- allow more lines of text, or use a smaller font. There is too little text right now to judge if a post is worth clicking on. Better yet, make it configurable.

- the app reloads resources when a post is clicked, and this is not efficient. G+ is easily my most data-hungry app right now.

Picked up my New EVO yesterday and won't update this app. Until I really have too. Just not a fan but the phone kicks ass.

I actually started to use it thanks to the update. Well done. I still only know three people on it though. The "nearby" circle is cool though, you get to hear from people who are local and do the same stuff I do.

Woke up yesterday morning to find that Google must have hired a Apple product designer :P

Really it's a bit confusing and now I find since text is overlaying the pics (which don't seem to render all that well on the stream screen) I find I have to scroll slower while perusing the stream for something I want to delve deeper into. It works for those will smaller circles or not following a lot of people, but I follow about 300 people in one circle so it's now made catching up on the phone hard. It's not terrible, but I think the mobile design needs some work.

It would be nice to see a bit of consistency between the mobile and the web versions. They are like two different universes. I do like the other features with the sharing and the instant hangouts though.

I just want to know why does everyone think they need to copy the Flipboard look? All these apps are starting to look alike. I find it hard to believe that Google would think this would make people jump from Facebook to G+

i think the new design is great! however, nobody that i know actually uses google+. lots of people have an account, they just don't use it.

I can't say it makes me as angry as your average facebook user when the Zuck shakes the sugar tree, but I'm not that into the new stream. Seems noisy to me. At first glance it does look nice though. The sliding left menu (facebook anyone?) is a nice touch. And being able to start hang outs from the app is a big bonus.

Google + has RUINED Picassa for me. I was hoping to migrate from Flickr (just to make my entire experience "google"), but then Google's photo storage/sharing as been hijacked by this confusing and messy Google plus business.
If anyone knows a way to remove all that "facebook-ish" junk and just get me back to a nice photo storage system, I'm all ears.

I like it, but the white post text doesn't always work depending on the image that is behind it - they should add a semi-transparent background to that text

On my phone, I like that it now takes up the full real estate of the screen. The only problem I see is the white text across a light-colored image.

On my table, it has a little ways to go. Landscape viewing of images only uses half the screen, so there is a large dark area to the right of every image. I'm sure it would cut off most of the image if it was stretched all the way across, but it does give the impression (currently) that something better could be done. Possibly if they kept the sidebar out all the time in landscape. That would make the empty space less noticeable.

On my droid charge, I love it, though I miss the start screen. However, the old UI works much better on my iconia tab - all the images for every post are stretched weird, and pixelated, and the screen real estate is not used properly.

I appreciate the new hangout feature, but not a fan in general. I'm a big G+ fan, especially the Google app and this latest update has brought me to a crawl! I have to click to open the drop-down menu just to see if I have notifications or messages.

I've never done much reading of the stream on my phone, so to put it as a mandatory landing page with HUGE pictures is annoying. I've resorted to going on the internet and calling up Google+ from there.

I want my icons back!!!

For some reason, the layers and colors make me dizzy. I don't know exactly what it is, but although it looks pretty, I just can't look at it for too long.

I was seeing how it is before I judge. My main issue like most is the white text on white or light pictures. Pics should show up below the text or something, a white text with black border or something would be cool. However I do like the profile pic & names arrangement.

It looks much prettier and is easier to navigate. Too bad it also looks like a mess on tablets with the UI being scaled just like any other phone app on a tablet. A few apps can get away with just scaling up a phone UI but social networking apps really should be trying to take advantage of the extra screen real estate.

Yeah, the update isn't everything and a bag of chips (salda, a tequila shot, and a lapdance) but is a major improvement over the endless scrolling and odd images in the last version and the neverending "F@*K I didn't click that" backnaving before. So yeah, I AM love it!