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Feb 10

Google’s Buzz, New Mystery Product, Unveiled

Google's Buzz, New Mystery Product, UnveiledGoogle’s new social media product has been unveiled. Known as Google Buzz, the search giant is taking direct aim at Twitter and Facebook, even in its branding, with a missive inviting users to “Go beyond status messages.”

There is come curiosity from a branding standpoint, as competitor Yahoo unveiled a news ranking site called Yahoo! Buzz in February 2008. While Yahoo! Buzz is a clear competitor with the likes of Digg andReddit, not the new Google service, it remains unclear why Google would brand a new product with a term that’s already associated with a competitor’s service.

The Wall Street Journal live-blogged the conference where Google Buzz was unveiled. In its coverage, the WSJ quoted Bradley Horowitz, VP of product marketing at Google, as telling the crowd that it’s increasingly difficult “to find the signal in the noise,” within social media applications. He characterized Google Buzz as “a Google approach to sharing.”

Google Buzz is already available to try via google.com/buzz. If you have a gmail account, you can get started right away. [Although a message atop the page warns: "We're still rolling out Buzz to everyone, so if you don't see it in your Gmail account yet, check back soon."].

Selling points include automatically “following” the people you connect with most in gmail; management of privacy settings; gmail in-box integration; interconnectivity with popular Web services like Twitter, Picasa, Flickr, and Google Reader; and a recommendation engine where Buzz highlights “interesting posts” and automatically culls the ones you are likely to skip.

The real nut of the service seems to be encapsulated in these lines from the promotional video: “Your friends can keep up with what you’re doing around the Web . . . all in one place.” And, “Buzz makes sure you see what matters most.”

Jeremy Nisen–Online Editor Hispanic Business Magazine

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