Google+ released version 3.2 of their mobile app today for both Android and iOS. The key feature of the new release is the integrated support for Google+ Business Pages. Business owners can now view and edit posts, comment and engage their audiences through their mobile devices.
Other improvements included support for iPhone 5 and iOS 6, as well as the ability to edit posts and the ability to search for people or posts on iPad and Android.
All three of the major social networks, Google+, Facebook and LinkedIn, have supported both personal and business profiles for some time now, though all have been slow and sporadic to bring that capability to their mobile apps. Facebook was the first to integrate Facebook Page support into their mobile app, though capabilities were and remain limited. Facebook then released a completely separate app called Pages Manager which provides additional capability, including analytics (Facebook Insights). Even though Google+ started to allow Business Pages back in November of 2011, mobile support hasn’t been available until now. However, even limited support is better than none at all, which is what we have with LinkedIn, who stll does not support Company Pages within their mobile apps.
Once you update and open your Google+ app, you will be presented with the option to choose which account you wish to log into, your personal account or one of your Pages. If you choose a page and tap next, you’ll see the standard feed of updates from anyone in your circles. You can post a status update, or tap the three bars in the left corner to get to the famiilar main menu and access your profile, events or photos. Hangouts and Messenger are greyed out.
Unfortunately, the app offers no way to switch between your personal profile and your business pages. Closing the app and reopening immediately simply returned me to where I was when I closed the app. Perhaps if I wait longer to reopen, I will be presented with the account choice screen again. Otherwise, the only option is to go to Settings and Logout, but that is a very inconvenient option. Watch for Google to release a maintenance update very soon to provide a more elegant means of switching accounts.
The app is available in Apple’s App Store (iOS) and Google Play (Android).