"Today we announced Google Buzz, a new product that integrates with your Gmail inbox and makes it easy to start rich conversations about the things you find interesting. Google Buzz lets you share web links, photos, videos, and more with those who are important to you. Rather than simply creating a mobile version of Buzz, we decided to take advantage of the unique features of a mobile device - in particular, location. We go through many experiences when we're on the go, and while there are lots of ways to share these experiences with your friends or even the world, there isn't always an easy way to let your audience know where you are when you post. Your location brings valuable context to the information you share. For example, does "Delicious dinner!" mean you're at a great restaurant, or that you had a wonderful home-cooked meal? Your mobile phone, which is with you almost all the time, can help answer these questions."
By now, you've probably read and heard all there is to know about Google Buzz. In an age where social networking is ubiquitous, you could argue that Google is a little late to the game. After all, Buzz still focuses on the core theme of status, link, photo, and video sharing, and that's nothing other social services haven't already executed. But there are elements in Buzz that help set it apart from the rest. For starters, it's built right into Gmail, so not only is there tight integration with your inbox, you're already connected to your growing list of contacts; in other words, no more finding or importing friends from scratch. It also integrates well with other services, such as Flickr, Twitter, Picasa, Google Talk, and Google Reader, plus thanks to Buzz's open architecture, there should be many more added to the list in the near future. And, of course, there's support for mobiles. Apart from presenting the aforementioned on a small screen, the mobile version of Buzz taps into many unique features of a mobile device, such as location services, so you can easily fetch a list of public buzzes near you, wherever and whenever. Or you can view public buzzes as a layer in the new Google Maps for mobile. Google takes it to the next level by tapping into its map data to use place names over the usual latitude and longitude. Intrigued? Jump the break for a video demo.
So, are there any buzzers in the house? If so, how are you finding it?
Well, I'm not a big social networking person but I like the fact that it centralizes a lot of the things that I do use. The only drawback is that your contacts must also have a gmail account to "follow" them. Still playing with features.
Canadian Road Warrior
If *everyone* you know is using Gmail, it looks good. But because it's all Gmail driven, it's a fail if you have friends that don't use Gmail. I have a Gmail account for instance, but I don't use it for much of anything. Buzz is too Google-centric to catch on, unless they open it up to allow third-party clients to access the content.
I like the video and photo features though - that's pretty slick.