Google is again trying its hand at penetrating the social media market with the release of its latest platform, Shoelace. The launch comes just weeks after the tech company retired Google+, a social network that was created in 2011.
The most notable difference between recently-cancelled Google+ and Shoelace is that the former was created with the intention of rivalling Facebook, while the latter is said to focus specifically on connecting people based on events and interests.
According to Cheryl Kahla, writer for The South African, users will ‘be able to search by interest and Shoelace will share things to do with people in your immediate area’ based on common pastimes.
Kahla continues, “events and activities are called ‘Loops’, and users can organise and participate in Loops. Think of them as the equivalent of Facebook Events. They’re an opportunity to explore a new city or meet new people”.
The new social media platform has been developed by Google’s experimental Area 120 product development workshop and is currently only available in New York City, on both IOS and Android devices. There has been no word on when the social network is set to be launched worldwide.
In an article for Gizmodo, Sam Rutherford says, “As fun as it is to poke Google for past failures in the social network space, amid growing concerns that time spent on platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram is having a negative impact on our lives, it’s kind of refreshing to see a social network whose main purpose is to encourage people to spend less time on said network and more time actually doing things”.
And even if this, the sixth attempt at a social network, were to fail — it’s not difficult to imagine some of Shoelace’s features pollinating across Google maps or another of the company’s services.
By Jenna Cook
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