A new venture called Buzz, from Google, might soon do away with the need for constant social networking emails in your inbox. Google Buzz, which is being rolled out to all Google account holders, aggregates all your social data into one thread in your GMail inbox.
Google Reader users might have noticed some nice social features which allowed you to follow other people and see the items they choose to share. In Google Reader, one could share interesting posts that they come across with others who chose to follow them and could even post updates much like any social network.
The features were quite useful, but frankly did seem quite out of place in an application which is essentially an RSS reader. Now as part of the GMail interface they perhaps make a little more sense.
As part of GMail, Google Buzz brings the same features, allowing one to follow updates from their friends and family, and aggregate it all in one place. Google Buzz can automatically keep your friends and Family aware of any pictures you add to your Picasa or Flickr albums, or if you share in interesting item in Google Reader, of videos uploaded to your YouTube account. It can even update from your Google Talk chat status, or your Twitter account. All of these updates can then be commented on, liked or emailed by people you share it with.
With Google Buzz, all your social interactions and updates can come to one place, right next to your Inbox.
Buzz is also available for mobile phones allowing you to send social updates on the go, with the added geolocation meta-data. So you can browse through your Buzz messages, and see which ones were sent from nearby, or tagged with your location. With the Android and iPhone apps you can even perform voice searches. As a layer in Google Maps for mobile, it shows Buzz posts sent by people plotted on Google maps.
Google Buzz acts more like a social aggregator than a social network on its own. Undoubtedly it is a powerful new way to keep track of what your contacts are up to.