It’s too bad I never cottoned on to Google+, because it now has a gorgeous new app for iPhone and iPod Touch. If this app had existed at the initial rollout for Google+, I certainly would’ve been more likely to take the time to learn what Plus is all about.
So, forget what you knew about the service from before and consider this Google+ rejuvenated. Upon log-in, you’ll be faced with a scrollable stream of images pulled from each new post from your circles. The poster’s name and user icon are overlaid on the photo, as are the first few words of the accompanying text. The lower edge of each photo displays the number of +1s and comment that post has received. That’s a lot of information to put on a single image, and although it might sound messy, Google has found a way to make it all blend together seamlessly. You can limit your stream to a specific circle. Tapping on a story will take you to the full post and its corresponding comments, which you can add to in-app. Overall, the app looks crisp and clean.
Google+ offers other features you’d expect, like the ability to create new posts for your own Plus account, as well as add and move friends and colleagues to new or among circles. I wasn’t expecting such robust functionality for its text and video messaging. I also found the idea of instant upload intriguing. With this turned on, whenever you take a photo on your device, Google+ will automatically upload it to a private album. Although this is a great idea for people who always forget to backup their images, use with caution should you have imagery you might not wanted linked to your Plus account, private album or not.
Of course, even with the accolades, I’d image that Google+ will still find itself with a shaky user base. I don’t know if it’s too late to draw people back to Plus, but this app is a great try.