Facebook vs. Google+: Which Social Network is Best?

Mobile Apps

Nearly half of Facebook users access the site from a phone. And for many smartphone addicts, the handheld is more social than the laptop. Both networks offer similar mobile apps. As on the web, Google+ is easier to navigate—despite squeezing in several extra features that the Facebook app lacks. (The very similar iPhone and Android phone versions were tested.)

Google+ has a clean design. Low-fi icons on a Google-esque white home page link to most of the same key sections on the website, such as Circles, Photos and Profile. And those sections have a top nav bar, as on the website, for digging deeper. In short, it would be hard to get lost.

Extras include group messaging and the ability to create friend-list Circles right in the app. The Android version can also automatically upload all pictures from the phone’s camera to a private online album. Google+ doesn’t yet have apps for iPads or Android tablets.

Facebook is characteristically busier, but the limits of a tiny screen help keep it in check. It opens to the basic news feed, with buttons for posting status updates and checking messages. The gory details are revealed only by clicking a button that opens a massive menu with items including Timeline view, events, friend lists, groups, chat and many others. It’s dense, but at least it’s hidden. The Facebook iPad app is virtually identical.

Winner: Google+

Clean design is even more important on a tiny screen, and Google+ efficiently packs in its many features.

Facebook vs. Google +

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  1. Adam Says:

    “But Facebook allows posting to only one of those groups per update.”

    That’s not true. I post to multiple friend lists all the time. Just select “Custom” and you’ve got much more powerful add/remove list options than Google+.

  2. MarcXW Says:

    Wow was this article biased,… BTW did you take into account the fact that Facebook has official mobile apps available on every platform??? Because Google + doesn’t. Facebook should win just for that.

  3. Sean Captain Says:

    Thanks for commenting.

    Adam, thanks for the tip.

    MarcVW, thanks for the input. Would you explain in more detail how you believe the article is biased?

  4. Ole Says:

    Good article. I find it hard to say that one platform is better than the other because that is not only a question about features and design. The kind of activity that is going on is also an important aspect of the “decision”. A few thoughts:

    - Many people will use both Facebook and G+
    - G+ and Facebook study eachother’s every move and it might very well be that they will end up looking more and more alike. Facebook’s implementation of the subscription feature is one example.
    - I believe that people in a few years time will start asking questions about what they really are getting out of the many hours they spend on social networks. What’s the return on social networking hours so to speak. The winner will be the one that helps people get more value for money. I’m leaning towards G+ on this end.

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