Google+ for Android App: Auto Photo Uploads, Groups Messaging. Gigantic Memory Chewing App

Google does not have a good track record with their social network projects. Remember Google Wave or Google Buzz? Probably not even though Buzz is still running. So, will their new Google+ service take off?

Introducing the Google+ project: Real-life sharing, rethought for the web

Google has a Google+ mobile app for Android.

Google+ Android app

However, the Google+ service is in an invitation-only field trial phase. So, although I was able to install the app, I can’t test it out. This is typical of Google service launches. They create a buzz and demand by artificially limiting access. But, be patient. It may turn out to be a bomb before it is fully rolled out.

Google+ consists of the following services (features):

Circles: Defined groups of people (friends, co-workers, family, clubs, etc.)
Sparks: Intelligent news and video aggregator based on your interests
Hangouts: Virtual meetups which includes the capability for multi-party video chats

There are also two mobile specific features:
Instant Upload: This is similar to Windows Phone 7’s ability to automatically upload photos to Skydrive.
Huddle: The feature appears to be based on the Circles defined groups. It lets you instant message (not SMS based) with everyone in a Circles group. This looks similar to the Windows Phone “Mango” group texting feature.

Note that the Google+ Android app is huge. The Android Market page says it is a 2.7MB download. However, unpacked it takes up an enormous 7.86MB of storage. Even worse, it cannot be relocated to a flash storage drive. So, it chews up a lot of system storage. The app is compatible with both phones (OS 2.1 or newer) and tablets.

Video courtesy of Google