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By Ben Hollom
Google has introduced a major revamp of its social network design. The first thing that users will notice is that Google + is quite literally focusing on images; currently cover photos are strikingly big and take up about half the page above the fold.
Apparently, Google is aiming to take advantage of consumers´ interest in more visual experiences but enlarging the size of the images is not the only change that Google has made to its network. There are new features introduced such as Auto Backup, which will instantly upload pictures taken by mobile phones – with the permission of the user, Auto Enhance, which will improve the quality of the image with a click of a button, and Auto Awesome, which allows a series of similar photos to be animated.
In addition, Google + Hangouts has also been updated, as Google has launched a stand-alone version of Hangouts that aims to facilitate real-time conversations by combining text, photos and live video and can be used on Android, iOS and desktop. There is also an option to look at conversation history to restore past messages.
Google is also trying to enhance the experience of moving between devices. In order to ensure that users get the best from their desktop and mobile experience, developers have improved mobile apps, so that they work properly on desktop too. A multi-column layout is available in one, two or three columns depending on the screen, as well as better sized images that fill up the screen and better animation that works equally well on various devices.