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Google+ launches updates to profile, local pages

Social network adds bigger photos, a space for local reviews and edit tools

Social network Google+ is launching some tweaks and updates to users' profile pages, as well as enabling local reviews.

"We spend lots of time listening to your feedback, and today we're launching some profile and page updates that you've been asking for," wrote Sara McKinley, a Google+ product manager, in a post on Google+ today. "Everything's rolling out gradually, so check back soon if you don't see it yet."

Google+ is also adding bigger cover photos to users' profile pages, McKinley said.

"Cover photos are much larger than before (up to 2120px by 1192px), and they display in 16x9 [aspect ratio] when fully expanded," she wrote. "This way more images can be used as cover photos, and there's more room for your selection to shine."

Google+ is also making it easier for users to edit their information.

The site's "About" tab now offers separate cards, such as Story, Places and Links. Each card has its own edit link. "As always: you can share specific fields with specific circles, or keep them just for you," McKinley noted.

Social networks, like Google+ and Facebook, have been focusing on a local interests, such as finding great local restaurants, a bike shop or a new hiking trail. Google+ is working that local angle with its round of updates.

A new tab has been added for local reviews, McKinley noted. The tab adds a place for users' to amass all of their local reviews. "Highlight your favorite restaurants, or hide the tab completely via settings -- it's completely up to you," she added.

Google+ has gotten a lot of attention in the past month because of some high-profile Google+ hangouts.

On Feb. 22, astronauts onboard the International Space Station hosted a hangout, taking questions on a recent communications outage, tweeting from space and what inspires them.

The week before that, President Obama also appeared at a hangout, answering questions about math and science and computer programming, along with minimum wage and gun violence. The president's hangout drew more than 36,000 viewers at its peak.

Sharon Gaudin covers the Internet and Web 2.0, emerging technologies, and desktop and laptop chips for Computerworld. Follow Sharon on Twitter at @sgaudin, on Google+ or subscribe to Sharon's RSS feed. Her email address is [email protected].

See more by Sharon Gaudin on Computerworld.com.

Read more about social media in Computerworld's Social Media Topic Center.

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