Google+ is a social media site running by world’s largest no1 search engine google. It’s just like Facebook. On October 8, 2018, Google announced that it was shutting down Google+ for consumers, citing low user engagement and a software error, first reported by The Wall Street Journal, that potentially exposed the data of hundreds of thousands of users. Google indicated that Google+ would operate until August 2019, allowing users to download and migrate their information. Google+ is the company’s fourth foray into social networking, following Google Buzz, Google Friend Connect, and Orkut. Google+ launched in June 2011. Features included the ability to post photos and status updates to the stream or interest-based communities, group different types of relationships into Circles, a multi-person instant messaging, text and video chat called Hangouts, events, location tagging, and the ability to edit and upload photos to private cloud-based albums. According to a 2016 book by a former Facebook employee, some leaders at Facebook saw Google’s foray into social networking as a serious threat to the company. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg instituted a company-wide “lockdown”, signaling that employees were supposed to dedicate time to bringing Facebook’s features into line with Google+. Assessments of Google+ growth have varied widely because Google first defined the service as a social network, then later as “a social layer across all of Google’s services”, allowing them to share a user’s identity and interests. According to Ars Technica, Google+ signups were “often just an incidental byproduct of signing up for other Google services.” Consequently, the reported number of active users on Google+ grew significantly, but the average time those users spent on the site was a small fraction of that on comparable social media services. In 2011 Google+ reached 10 million users just two weeks after the launch. In a month, it reached 25 million. In October 2011, the service reached 40 million users, according to Larry Page.Based on ComScore, the biggest market was the United States followed by India. By the end of the year Google+ had 90 million users. In October 2013, approximately 540 million monthly active users made use of the social layer by interacting with Google+’s enhanced properties, like Gmail, +1 button, and YouTube comments. Some 300 million monthly active users participated in the social network by interacting with the Google+ social networking stream. User engagement on Google+ was low compared with its competitors; ComScore estimated that users averaged just 3.3 minutes on the site in January 2012, versus 7.5 hours for Facebook.
In March 2013, average time spent on the site remained low: roughly 7 minutes, according to Nielsen, not including traffic via apps.In February 2014, The New York Times likened Google+ to a ghost town, citing Google stats of 540 million “monthly active users”, but noting that almost half don’t visit the site. The company replied that the significance of Google+ was less as a Facebook competitor than as a means of gathering and connecting user information from Google’s various services. In April 2014, Vic Gundotra, the executive in charge of Google+, departed the company with management responsibility going to David Besbris. By March 2015, Google executive Bradley Horowitz, who had co-founded Google Plus with Gundotra, had replaced Besbris, becoming vice president of streams, photos, and sharing. In an interview with Steven Levy published on May 28, 2015, Horowitz said that Google+ was about to undergo a “huge shift” that would better reflect how the service is actually used. By that time, two core Google+ functions, communications and photos, had become standalone services. Google Photos, Google’s photo and video library, was announced at the May 2015 Google I/O conference. Google Hangouts, Google’s communications platform, was announced two years earlier, also at Google I/O. Google subsequently refocused Google+ on shared interests, removing features not supporting “an interest-based social experience”. The company also eliminated the Google+ social layer; users no longer needed a Google+ profile to share content and communicate with contacts. The transition began with YouTube, where a Google+ profile was no longer required to create, upload, or comment on a channel, but a Google+ page was instead required. YouTube comments no longer appeared on Google+ or vice versa. n October 2018, Google announced it would shut down the consumer version of Google Plus by the end of August 2019. The company cited two reasons: low user engagement, and difficulties in “creating and maintaining a successful Google+ that meets consumers’ expectations.” The company noted that 90% of user sessions on the service last under five seconds. It also acknowledged a design flaw in an API that potentially exposed private user data. Google said it found no evidence that “any developer was aware of this bug, or abusing the API” nor that “any Profile data was misused.” According to the Wall Street Journal, the data exposure was discovered in the spring of 2018 but not reported by the company due to fears of increased regulatory scrutiny. The newspaper said that “the move effectively puts the final nail in the coffin of a product that was launched in 2011 to challenge Facebook, Inc. and is widely seen as one of Google’s biggest failures. On June 11, 2014, Google combined Google Places and Google+ Local Business Pages with the Google My Business product. The product uses the interface of Google+ but has many more features including insights and analytics. On May 30, 2012, Google Places was replaced by Google+ Local, which now integrates directly with the Google+ service to allow users to post photos and reviews of locations directly to its page on the service. Additionally, Google+ Local and Maps also now feature detailed reviews and ratings from Zagat, which was acquired by Google in September 2011.