It’s not very often that Google fails in a new business initiative but Google+ has been one notable exception. Now the company is preparing to close its failing social media network on 2nd April with all profiles and pages due for deletion on that day.
The service made it easy for users to create a Google+ page without realising they had even joined the social network and caused confusion for many. So here are some questions surrounding the discontinuation of this service answered.
What is due to be deleted?
Any Google+ pages you have created and all photos and videos stored within your Google+ album archive. Don’t worry, this does not affect other Google services you may be using – so Google Photos, for example, will continue to operate. Also, the Google account you use to access Gmail, YouTube and Maps will still work.
Do I have a Google+ account?
Can’t remember whether you set up a Google+ account? Google should be emailing you (they may already have done this) to advise you of the upcoming deletion of your account.
Still confused? You can always check at plus.google.com. If you log in using your Google account details and can still see a button on the left side of the screen saying “Join Google+”, then you know you are not a member of this social network.
Why is Google doing this?
Officially, Google is blaming low usage and “challenges involved in maintaining a successful product that meets consumers’ expectations”. Indeed, we can all agree that Google+ never really looked like rivalling Facebook.
However, Google+ also suffered a major data leakage in March 2018, which it failed to disclose for six months. This breach potentially affected up to 500,000 accounts and Google has been struggling to manage the negative publicity whilst reassuring users that it has found no evidence of any misuse of the profile data that was stolen. Maybe this has been another factor in Google’s decision to can its social network altogether.
What do I need to do?
The easy answer is ‘nothing’ – that’s assuming you either have no Google+ account or are not using the account you have. Just relax and let Google delete it for you. In the unlikely event, however, that you are an avid user of Google+, and you wish to download all the data from your account, Google has a page you can visit to do so.