Not to be outdone by its peers, Google announced a series of product updates to its social network on Monday morning, catching up to a recent slew of social network makeovers.
Most of the updates are minor tweaks, aimed at refining the company's product in response to user feedback—and also after eyeing development at Facebook and Twitter, no doubt.
Do you have a few Google+ friends who are obnoxiously prolific in their status updates? The new "graphic equalizer" essentially sticks a volume knob on every user, allowing you to adjust your exposure to annoying updates accordingly. So, if you'd rather not read up-to-the-minute coverage of your pal's sick kitty, slide the equalizer button to the left and watch the offending updates dwindle (or disappear completely, if you're really that tired of them).
Taking a cue from Facebook's highly developed photo sharing system, Google revamped the photo viewing features of Google+. In the new version, the lightbox viewing environment gets a significant overhaul, allowing users to view pictures in full-screen mode, while one-by-one comments slowly populate the periphery.
Photo tagging is also now easier, and the traditional comment sidebar (the one that appears when not in full-screen lightbox mode) is now backlit with white, making it easier to read what friends have written. Finally, Google gives users a host of simple photo editing tools, so cropping, adding text, and overlaying goofy graphics (like antlers or santa hats) is fairly simple.