Google has removed prominent links to Google+ accounts at the top of search results, Google’s homepage, and Gmail, according to a new report today. The change suggests the tech giant is doing still more to gradually phase out its social network.
You can still find a link to your Google+ account by clicking the grid icon to bring up a bunch of Google apps, as 9to5Google mentioned in its report on the change today.
Google has been taking steps in the past few months to optimize Google+. Google quietly removed the Google+ Shared Collections feature, announced the new Collections feature, and basically split up Google+ into separate products, Photos and Streams. Last week Google Photos, a service based on the photo component of Google+, officially launched.
Executives specifically described Google Photos as a standalone product that was not part of Google+. That’s an attempt to distance the new service from Google+, which launched in 2011 and is considered less of a success for Google than other social networks, like Facebook and Twitter.
Last week, I ran into Sundar Pichai, Google’s senior vice president for Android, Chrome, and Apps, and I asked him what would be happening to Google+. He responded by saying, “We are working on it. … You will hear more about it later this year.”
Google did not immediately respond to a request for comment.