Google Inc. is taking a swipe at Facebook Inc. and Twitter Inc. with a new feature that makes it easier for users of Gmail to view media and status updates shared online by their friends.
Google could announce the new Gmail feature as soon as this week, said people familiar with the matter. A Google spokeswoman declined to comment.
The change adds a module to the Gmail screen that will display a stream of updates from individuals a user chooses to connect with, said one of these people. It is a format popularized by Facebook and Twitter.
We think that Google’s (Google) new social status feature will be announced tomorrow. We have just received an invite to attend an event at Google’s headquarters where it will be “unveiling some product innovations in two of [its] most popular products.”
The description fits very well with the WSJ report. Gmail (Gmail) is one of Google’s most popular products, and this new social status update feature would be a “product innovation” within Gmail.
As for what the other product getting new features may be, we can’t say for certain. Picasa (Picasa), YouTube (YouTube), Google Friend Connect (google friend connect) and Google Accounts all seem like potential candidates.
Altri propongono idee per il G-Twitter (via Scripting News)
1. Reliability. Twitter still has trouble dealing with high-flow events like last night’s SuperBowl. Lots of Fail Whales. So if Google is able to offer reliability, no matter how much of an advantage Twitter’s installed base is, it won’t matter. When Twitter goes down everyone will reassemble on Glitter.
4. Relationships with hardware vendors. I still want a one-click Twitter camera. If I can’t have it from Twitter, I’ll take it from Google.
5. No 140-character limit. I debated this one with myself. At first I compromised and said okay let’s have a 250-character limit, or a 500-character limit. But I really don’t want a limit. If I want to write short status messages, no problemmo. We’ve already made the cultural transition. We know how to do it. But sometimes a thought just can’t be expressed in 140 characters. No one is wise enough to know what the limit is, so let’s just not have one.
6. No URL-shorteners. I’ve explained this so many times. They’re stupid and ugly and they hurt the web. I like it when developers take the time to craft their URLs so they make sense to users. That’s all the shortening we really need and all we should have.
Those are some of my wish-list items. It seems likely Google will offer #1 and #2. Very unlikely they’ll do #3 (they don’t trust developers any more than Apple does). Probably not #4, though it would be easy to get some people from Kodak and Sony to come on stage with them. #5 would take a teeny bit of guts. It’s a perfect way to throw some serious confusion at Twitter. I’d recommend going all the way, but if they can’t, go to 500-characters. Get some editors and authors on stage to say how nice it would be. Because they’re making a commitment to their own URL-shortener it seems unlikely they would outlaw them on their status network, but one can hope.