Google announced several small changes and new Google+ features today. Among them, the Google stream filtering feature has arrived, and finally brand pages can have more than one administrator. Google+ users can now use a sliding control to choose different levels of “volume” for their Circles; Pages can have up to 50 administrators.
New Google+ Pages Features
The single administrator complaint was a big one when Google+ Pages first launched. Robert Scoble summed it up pretty well in his November 8 blog post “I wish I had never heard of Google+’s brand pages,” when he discovered only after creating a Page for Rackspace that he was the sole owner/poster. It was rather unthinkable that the Pages were pushed out to large brands first, with no way to split posting duties without allowing others access through one personal account.
But no more! Page owners can now delegate and name up to 50 Page administrators. Other Page updates include: Notifications for Page owners on all Page activity - also unbelievably missing from the launch of Pages Page admins and users who visit the Page will be able to see an aggregate number of user who have +1’d the Page or added it to a Circle.
“Volume” Control, Sneak-Preview Notifications, and Redesigned Photo Lightbox
Google’s fine-grained stream controls are similar to Facebook’s “How many updates?” control. But while Facebook’s All Updates - Most Updates - Only Important settings control updates from personal users, the new Google+ control applies to entire Circles.
Facebook does have a similar control for Lists, though it’s more difficult to find, in Lists > Manage List > Updates to Show. Facebook’s control allows users to choose the types of content they would like to see in their Newsfeed from those on the list, ie.: status updates, photos, games, comments and likes, etc.
Google+ allows users to set Circle “volumes” by selecting whether to “Show everything from this stream in my main stream,” “Show most,” “Show fewer,” or “Show none.”
Google+ notifications have been tweaked a bit, with sneak previews showing more of posts without actually navigating to them. Users can now see +1s and Shares since their last login, as well.
Finally, Lightbox received a makeover. Photos can be blown up to full screen from a bottom-right corner control. Comments appear in a sidebar and overlaid on the photo itself. Photos with tagged people now “spotlight” the tagged user when their name is clicked from the sidebar. Users can also use Picasa tools to do photo editing within Google+.
What do you think of Google+’s most recent improvements? Let us know in the comments!