In an official statement this week, Google announced to shut down its social media network Google+ on April 2. Users are advised by the company to download and store the data from their profiles on the network.
After the declared date, all accounts and pages on Google+ will be removed. According to the company, low usage of the network is a major reason the tech giant decided to shut down its social network, which was officially released in 2011. Until 2015, Google+ had more than 111 million users.
Why is Google closing Google+?
Google+ had millions of users, but Google is closing the network. Why? According to reports, people were creating accounts on the social network without realizing they were registering there. It means Google+ had countless accounts that were created accidentally and users were not aware of them.
Apart from that, the company encountered multiple challenges in the last few years since its launch in 2011. They include a data leak in March 2018 that affected more than 500,000 accounts. Although Google didn’t find whether the leak led to misuse of data or not, it is predicted that different applications got access to private information of many users.
Google had planned to shut down Google+ in August 2019, but another bug in November last year forced the company to take immediate steps. Like the March bug, it also led to data leak of several users.
Now, the users are confused if the announcement will impact their existing Google accounts.
What is Google removing?
According to Google’s statement, all the profiles and pages on Google+ will be removed on April 2. After the removal of accounts, all the photos and videos stored on the accounts will be no longer available.
However, the removal of Google+ album archive is not going to affect other Google services. For example- files like photos and videos stored in Google Photos will stay there. In addition, Google accounts linked to other services like Google Maps and YouTube will operate the way they were working earlier. Only Google+ profiles linked to Google accounts will be deleted.
What should users do?
Although many Google+ users don’t know they have accidentally registered on the social network, some actually use it and share files online with other users. What they should do is download all their files from Google+ and save them on other places before April 2.
The search engine giant launched Google+ in June 2011 with an aim to compete against other social networks like Facebook and Twitter. But the network was never in the race. In 2015, it had more than 111 Million active users. Out of them, only around 6.7 million Google+ users had posted 50 or more posts.
In a recent blog post, Google accepted that low usage and frequent challenges were the reasons it decided to shut down the network in April instead of August 2019. It is hard to say if there will be anyone who is going to miss Google+. Will you?