Google+ opens up to everyone


Posted at Sep 21 2011 04:26 PM | Updated as of Sep 22 2011 05:27 PM

MANILA, Philippines - After a three-month run as an invite-only service, Google has opened up its Google+ social network to all users.

"Anyone can sign up for Google+ -- no invitation required," Vic Gundotra, Google's senior vice president of engineering, announced in a blog post on Tuesday.

On top of this, Gundotra said the company has added several new features to Google+, from the integration of its search engine into the social network to improvements on its live video chats called "hangouts."

"The Google+ project has been in field trial for just under 90 days, and in that time we've made 91 different improvements...Google+ is still in its infancy, of course, but we're more excited than ever to bring the influence and richness of real-life sharing to software," Gundotra wrote.

Earlier, Gundotra said Google+ aims to "bring the nuance and richness of real-life sharing to software" by separating online friends and family into different "circles" or networks.

Facebook, currently the world's largest social network with over 500 million users, has been criticized for sharing updates to all of a user's friends unless he goes through a relatively complicated process to create groups.

On Tuesday, it started to finetune news feeds from contacts.