Well, that didn’t take long. Just three days after we reported that the Google+ app was going to be getting an update, the new software dropped. And just as we expected, the update brings Hangout support as well as a host of other enhancements.

Now that the social networking service is open to the public, and has a well-rounded mobile application, it’ll be interesting to see how it stacks up against the competition. Hit the jump for a full rundown of all of the app’s new features and improvements…

  • Join Hangouts from the mobile app
  • Huddle is now Messenger
  • Send photos in Messenger
  • +1 on comments
  • Reliability improvements in Messenger
  • Granular push notification settings
  • Map view in profile for places you’ve lived
  • Improved +mention support
  • Share a post with individuals
  • Improved public search for people
  • Various bug and performance improvements

I have to say that Hangout is the killer feature here. To be able to video chat simultaneously with 9 of your friends, from your phone, is kind of a big deal. We haven’t tested the addition ourselves yet, but Seth Weintraub of 9to5Mac claims it works great.

If you want to download the new Google+ app, you can grab it from the App Store here.

  • Ins0mniac

    It’s a great little update, but yet again the iPad has been left behind. You can the app in 2x mode (the awesome ‘RetinaPlus’ tweak at least gives you the much sharper iPhone 4 graphics) however without Landscape mode or any kind of proper iPad support, it’s a pain in the butt to use, and obviously just looks just like an oversized phone app!

    The alternative for iPad users is to use the severely limited and basic generic Google+ mobile website, which is fine on a phone, but terrible on a 10″ display! Looks plain stupid and is devoid of advanced functionality!

    So, with all other options exhausted, naturally the most logical move is to attempt to use the full desktop version of Google+ on the iPad in Safari. The frustrating thing is, you can view the site no problem at all. In fact it seems to render really quickly, cleanly and looks as great as it does on a desktop browser. You can also go as far as starting a new post, and if you have Safari Upload Enabler installed, you an easily add videos and pictures, and adjust who the post will be seen by via your normal circle controls. However, it’s the text entry boxes of all things that are incompatible with iPad! When you click any text entry box (whether for a new post or replying to a friend’s) your keyboard will never appear, and the box simply flashes, or strange things occur, like the page reloads.

    I have tried 6 leading iOS browsers (I know they are all based off the same webkit code, with the same limitations, but it was worth a shot 🙂 ) and all yield the same disappointing results. I even tried hooking up a hardware blue-tooth keyboard, but I still couldn’t type in any boxes (or cut and paste etc).

    Surely Google must be appear of this problem? There are so many iPad users out there now and it seems strange Google would want to shut our or alienate iPad users when many of them love the site and are helping it take off. Google have clearly put a lot of effort into making the Google+ app work really well on phones and other iOS devices, by keeping features in line with Android, so why leave such a popular tablet behind?

    I really hope to see the Google+ app go universal soon. And the text entry bug fixed for desktop view of the site from the iPad too. I really want Google+ to succeed, but right now it’s too painful an experience to bother with whenever I’m on the iPad (which is more and more every day! :))

    • OCD Steve Jobs

      far too many words. i quit reading. couldn’t finish

      • Ins0mniac

        Never finished one of those annoying “book” thingies then I take it?

  • BLTKOR

    Wow man you must have lots of free time 🙂

    • Ins0mniac

      If you’re talking to me, I beta test a ton of iOS and Android apps for iPad and Honeycomb tablets, so the above post didn’t take long to do at all. As an avid user of Google+ I’d just like a decent way to use it from the iPad and it became clear quickly that there is no easy way.

      At the moment unless I’m using my shitty Motorla Xoom, I have to resort to logging into my Windows machine remotely from the iPad (using the “logMeIn” app) just to make posts using the full Google+ desktop site. That’s pretty lame and there’s no good reason this should be the case.

  • Andrew

    Does hangout work for video chat over 3G?