Google+ Adds A Bunch Of New Features For Android Users

Dave Besbris, Vice President of Engineering for Google+, has just updated the Google+ blog with 18 new updates to Google+’s app for Android. This is all part of the #seasonforshipping project planned for Android’s Google+ app.

The original plan was to give away one Google+ gift a day to Android users, but that plan was scrapped in favor of a more practical idea; combining all 18 days worth of gifts into one holiday package. The updates are divided into 3 sections.

Giving you the best mobile and photo experiences

  • On-the-go profile editing
  • Easier way to create content
  • Notification whenever there are new things to read
  • Subscription to mobile notifications from your favorite circles
  • Capabilities to interact with Google+ communities
  • Full-size backups of photos (up to 5GB free)
  • Increased standard-picture size (up to 2048px)
  • Photo spheres for mobile stream (Android 4.2 users can create 360-degree panoramas viewable by Android 2.2+ devices).

Connecting with friends and family

  • In ‘Events’, you can send messages directly to specific guests
  • You can view who has opened your ‘Events’ invitation
  • You can invite people to your Google+ event by copying and pasting the URL in an e-mail or IM.
  • Guests can RSVP with the number of people they’re bringing
  • Ability to attend Hangouts with very low bandwidth (only 150KB of bandwidth required)
  • Ability to duplicate events

Stocking Stuffers

  • ‘Hangouts On Air’ now hides the “filmstrip” of faces when you’re the only participant, and it expands your video to fill the entire feed.
  • Animated GIFs
  • Birthday Reminders on Google Now
  • Lock screen widget

That’s 18 days worth of updates wrapped into one, awesome package. There’s an update for everyone in this new package, and it may even be enticing for those of you who aren’t using Google+ yet. This definitely trumps the  new native Facebook App that was released yesterday (though that was a welcomed update too). You can download Google+ v3.3 later today.

Google+ Project

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