Is Google’s Buzz Light Years Ahead of the Competition?
On the surface, the new Google Buzz social media platform looks and feels like many others. As you drill down further, however, the potential goldmine becomes apparent.
The key features released by Google include:
• Contacts are integrated automatically from Gmail inboxes so you do not need to manually enter information from friends and family.
• You have the option to share a Buzz either publicly or privately. The system will remember your previous preference so that the response to a private Buzz will also be private.
• Rather than receiving a pile of emails telling you that someone has replied to your messages, or joined your circle of friends, Buzz will simply update the existing content thread so that everything is in one manageable location.
• Buzz gives you the ability to quickly share pictures, videos, links, messages from other social media sites and RSS feeds from Google Reader.
Another very interesting feature adds Buzz messages from not only friends, but friends of friends. Depending on your feedback to that content the system will learn your preference and will alter future recommendations.
Buzz also allows one to pull content from various social sites on the web. Currently supported sites include: Twitter, YouTube, Picasa, Flickr, Blogger and any feed (like your personal blog) connected to one's Google profile. When something's publicly posted via Buzz, it instantaneously adds the post to your Google Profile page.
Google Mobile Maps has added a new Buzz feature allowing you to post to Buzz quickly from Google Maps. It will grab your location and link it to a real place rather than just an address.
Eventually, Google will be adding Buzz to Google Apps accounts so that businesses and schools can use it for internal communication and information sharing. This could have a huge impact on improving workforce time-management and the resulting financial savings for many large companies.
Perhaps the major benefit of Google Buzz is the built-in search functionality. Derived from what Google does best, this feature eclipses all competitors. Sifting though endless piles of messages and finding exactly what you are looking for, instantly, will be a huge draw.
In a seamless transition, and with a very large base of people to work with, Google has ensured that current Gmail account holders will be using Buzz in the very near future. If Buzz can deliver on the promise to better manage, locate and explore current conversations as well as new ones, Google will make us all believers.