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Google requiring new users adopt Gmail, Google+

updated 03:00 pm EST, Fri January 20, 2012

Gives Gmail address & signs user up for Google+

Google is now steering users into extra services when they register a new Google account on the sign-up page. Now, a new subscriber must provide more information then in the past to create an account, which in turn is automatically used to enroll them in Google+ and create a Gmail account. Although it's not explicitly stated, users can opt out, but the move counts on them accepting the extra features by default.

In the past, if an individual wanted to create a Google account, all they had to do was provide an e-mail address or open up a Gmail account. This would allow that user to make online purchases, upload files to Google Docs, or use Google Calendar.

Now, Google is asking those wishing to create a Google account to provide their birth date, gender, location (at the country level), and optionally mobile phone number. Google then uses this information to create a personal profile and enroll the person in Google+ and give them a Gmail address.

The new account enrollment process does make it more convenient for those who do want a basic Google account and also Gmail, Google+, or both. It's also a subtle and possibly controversial way the company can add more members to its Google+ ranks as it tries to go head-to-head with Facebook. The strategy is similar to one used by publications that offer free subscriptions to bolster circulation numbers, and then hope the reader turns into a paid subscriber down the road. Google+ currently has 90 million individuals enrolled.

It may draw further antitrust scrutiny as well. Most accusations of anti-competitiveness aimed at Google have accused it of using its dominance of search for an unfair advantage elsewhere. [via Google Operating System Blog]



Google's new account creation form




Google's old account creation form






by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. global.philosopher

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Yahoo did a similar thing years ago

    That didn't work out too well for them.

    Can't wait for Googles replacement....this time they may stick to "Do no evil".

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