During a special event today at Google Headquarters in Mountain View, CA, the search giant unveiled its new Google Buzz approach to sharing and several new features designed to enhance its Gmail service and bring it more in line with other mainstream social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter.
Google Buzz, which works inside the Gmail interface, includes the following features:
• Auto-following. We didn’t want users to have to peck out a totally new social graph. There has always been a giant social network under Gmail.
• Rich, fast sharing experience. Same nice Gmail UI and keyboard shortcuts. Special attention to media.
• Public and private sharing. We want things Google can index, but also private messages.
• Inbox integration. The inbox is the center for communication.
• Just the good stuff. Some much social data, we need to filter the noise.
• Go to google.com on your iPhone or Android phone web browser.
• New application for Buzz.
• Update to Google Maps for mobiles. Android, Windows Mobile and Symbian today
According to Google, they will be rolling out the starting today so keep an eye out. One question to consider, though, is if Google’s answer to social networking will actually be successful or not? As someone who uses Twitter and Facebook daily but has less time for something like Friendfeed (which Buzz is similar to) I wonder if users will take to these new features or not.
Also, if you’re interested, there’s a video produced by Google that explains Buzz a bit more after the jump.