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Will the new design be the end of Google Plus?

The classic Google Plus will soon stop working, but the new version is worse than classic.


Edited: 2017-03-12 15:54

Google plus article image

I never really liked Google+, and one reason is it's awful layout and poor usability. The design is too large, and the usability is generally very low. It does seem like Google is trying to improve the social network, but their efforts seem to be failing. Sometimes even making things worse than hey already are.

For example, in 2015, Google+ was redisigned, drastically decreasing the usability of the site. The classic Google+ was also not very good in my opinion. The design was non-intuitive, and suffered from problems. Pages would constantly be presented with a popup message saying:

You are now using Google+ as the Beamtic page.

Not only has page owners using the social network been plagued by the above popup, but you are also unable to copy and paste URLs without the site automatically switching you back to your personal account. The only way to navigate to a certain community or Google+ profile, seems to be by using the build-in search function in Google+.

Another problem has been the apparent misuse of client-side scripting for layout and animation purposes. I suspect this being the main cause of Google+ being so slow and unresponsive, sometimes freezing for several seconds. This, combined with the Design / layout being too big, giving you a poor view of what is on a given page, really leaves you with a bad experience.

The 2015 redesign of Google+

You would think that Google was working to improve the service, but after the redesign it became a lot harder to use, and some things simply became impractical. The service is still very much slow, and often freezes for several seconds, and I can not really find any actual improvements.

I stopped using the service for a period thinking that this was the end of the old Google+. Later I found out you could just switch back to Classic Google+ – at least for awhile. Maybe Google has realized that the re-design has actually made the service worse, and they might want to convince users to stay?

On January 24 people will no longer be able to switch back to Classic Google+, so unless I start getting huge amounts of likes and traffic for Beamtic, I personally plan to discontinue my use of Google+ entirely. When now using the classic version, users are prompted with this message:

Heads up! Classic Google+ is going away soon, but you’ll still find all of your stuff on the shiny new Google+.

The new design is very limited, and you can not easily manage your circles anymore. Instead, you are forced to first follow someone, and only then can you add them to another circle. You also can not add people from the post activity, and you have to first go their profile before you can add them. If you hover a username, it takes several seconds for the popup to appear, and sometimes it will not even load for some reason.

The design itself is, of course, still very clumsy (too big), slow, and unresponsive (freezes). But maybe this is just on older computers. However, I do not think you should have a strong computer just to visit a simple website. This is clearly just an example of very poor design.


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