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Google+ now open to all -- no invitation required

Google

After being an invitation-only club for three months, Google+ has finally fully opened its doors to the public.

In a blog post announcing a series of improvements to the social network, Google's Senior Vice President of Engineering Vic Gundotra revealed that Google+ is finally moving from "field trial" to "beta" — and ditching the requirement for invitations in the process.

Now anyone can visit google.com/+ and sign right up for the service.

Awesome, right?

And, as I mentioned, this change is only the cherry on top of the improvements being made to Google+ or, more specifically, to the Hangouts feature. Those include the ability to use the video chat feature on mobile devices running Android 2.3 (or higher), the ability to have more than eight individuals watch a Hangout, and more:

  • Screensharing: for when you want to show off your vacation photos, your high score, your lesson plan or whatever else is on your screen
  • Sketchpad: for when you want to draw, doodle, or just scribble together
  • Google Docs: for when you want to write, plan or present something with others
  • Named Hangouts: for when you want to join or create a public hangout about a certain topic (like fashion or music or sports...) 

Additionally, Google is allowing the Google+ search function to sift through posts — and not just user names — from now on.

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