Google Spaces: Wave revived with none of the splash
Google just released a new app platform, Spaces. It’s their latest attempt at social, and is very much like Google Wave mashed together with Slack, but with none of the functionality.
When Wave died, 99% of it’s features (which were way ahead of their time) got adapted into Gmail, Hangouts, Google+ Communities, & Drive. The thing is that Spaces feels really limited right now. Sure, you can do stuff within a Space, but it’s limited to just Search, YouTube, & IMs. I can’t drop a Drive file into a Space, which is what I want to do more than anything else, really. Just drop a Drive file, and have it automatically give sharing persmissions to anyone in that particular Space. It’s essentially Pinterest for small groups, and as a Slack competitor, it fails in that regard.
What Google should have done with Spaces is bake it into Hangouts. WhatsApp already has groups that allows sharing of images, YouTube links, and more importantly, documents. Yet, without a trace of self-awareness, Google actually wrote on the Spaces website, “getting friends into the same app can be challenging,” which is why we have Hangouts, Gmail, Drive, WhatsApp, iMessage, Facebook Messenger and Slack. Who needs one more app that does more of the same stuff, only in this case, not.
Spaces is certainly interesting, but right now it feels wholly unfinished, but hopefully it will get some feature updates shortly after #io16. I’m just hoping that Google doesn’t kill this product off in two years time, because it does seem to have a lot of potential, but the last time I said that, we were given Hangouts, and we all know how well that went.