Google+ opened up to everyone

Google has opened up its social network to anyone who wants to join.

Google+ opened up to everyone

Google+ arrived three months ago, and has gained tens of millions of users despite requiring an invitation to the site – although there’s an ongoing debate over how many people regularly use the network.

Announcing the open beta, senior vice president of engineeering, Vic Gundotra, said Google+ has had 90 improvements over the past 90 days, and unveiled another ten, including tweaks to hangouts and a new search tool, as well as the addition of “open signups”.

“For the past 12 weeks we’ve been in field trial, and during that time we’ve listened and learned a great deal,” Gundotra said in a post on the Google blog.

“We’re nowhere near done, but with the improvements we’ve made so far we’re ready to move from field trial to beta, and introduce our 100th feature: open signups.”

The Hangouts video chatting tool is now available on phones running Android 2.3 and up, with an iOS app on the way. Users will also be able to broadcast their streams to up to nine people, share screens and documents, and there’s now an API for third-party developers.

Google has also added a search function to the site. “Just type what you’re looking for into the Google+ search box, and we’ll return relevant people and posts, as well as popular content from around the web,” Gundotra said.

Google also revealed a few upcoming mobile features, including better SMS support and improvements to the +1 system on handsets, as well as better tools to let mobile users customise notifications, edit profile photos and store the app on their SD card. Huddle, meanwhile, has been renamed Messenger will soon get photo sharing.

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