Google: Google+ Enterprise Deployment Coming in ‘Days’
It seems appropriate to get an update on the Google+ social network’s enterprise deployment readiness from Google Enterprise President Dave Girouard’s own profile. And to cut right to the chase, Girouard wrote: “Yes, Google+ is on its way to Google Apps users — it’s a matter of days!”
Let’s back up a little for some perspective: Way back when Google+ launched at the end of June 2011, its privacy-focused take on social networking caused a huge stir. CTOs, CIOs, Google Apps Authorized Resellers and end users publicly counted the seconds until it was added to the Google Apps for Business and Google Apps for Education premium cloud productivity suites.
Fast forward to the present: it’s not that Google+ is a failure, but the hype has cooled off considerably. Doomsayers (including at least one within Google itself) are quick to predict that it’s a flop in the vein of Google Wave and Google Buzz. But it still has a fairly dedicated user base, largely Facebook defectors, and they’ve responded very positively to Girouard’s announcement. At the time of writing, it was at +108 (Google’s version of the Facebook “Like”) with 86 shares. So clearly, there’s some interest.
Of course, there are reservations. A sentiment commonly observed in that comment thread is that many users, even businesspeople, have been using their personal Google Apps accounts to register for Google+. So unless there’s some kind of identity merge, being able to use their corporate Google identity on Google+ would entail starting all over at zero followers, zero shares and zero profile information.
Regardless, it seems that Google+ for enterprise is almost a reality. And needless to say that when Google flips the switch, TalkinCloud will be watching.