google plus business features august 2012

Google Brings ‘Plus into the Workplace’

Google unveiled a new range of Google+ features for businesses today. The features, which are very much focussed on social workplace collaboration, are initially available in preview mode to Google Apps customers. Google confirmed this preview will be available ‘free until 2013.’ On that basis, we can make a fair assumption that they’ll eventually be chargeable additionally.

There are three main features at present which have now been released into full preview, after having been privately piloted by companies including Kaplan and Banshee Wines. They are:

  • Private sharing – allowing  businesses to share posts exclusively with people in their company.
  • Hangouts – (already available for users) with integrated Gmail and Calendar support for business video conferences
  • Admin controls – allowing companies to control permissions on posts and Hangouts shared and initiated by their users

I suppose the carrot Google is dangling is really in the form of the promise that ‘this is just the beginning.’ An interesting, though not entirely unexpected move.