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Google Is Still Competing with Facebook Even with Google+ Halt

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Google Plus struggled to win over users

Alphabet’s (GOOGL) Google has finally shut down its Google Plus social network, a failed venture full of lessons for the Internet search giant. The consumer version of Google Plus shut down on April 2. After disclosing last year that the personal information of millions of Google Plus users may have been exposed, Google said it would shut down the service in a few months.

Google Plus was launched in 2011 as Google’s challenger to Facebook (FB) and Twitter (TWTR) in the social media market. But Google Plus struggled to attract users, and Google disclosed last October that 90% of people on the network use it for less than five seconds per session.

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Neighbourly is another Google challenger to Facebook

For Google, the shutdown of Google Plus means a decreased presence in the social media business, not total surrender to Facebook. In India, Google runs a social network called Neighbourly, which is designed as a local information board. With Neighbourly, Google will continue to battle Facebook and other competitors in the social media market. Social media platforms mostly make money through advertising, and India presents an attractive revenue opportunity. According to Zenith data cited by Mint newspaper, India’s digital advertising market will more than double to about $3.0 billion by 2021 from around $1.4 billion in 2018.

Advertising revenue rose 20% YoY to $32.6 billion for Google parent Alphabet in the fourth quarter. Facebook, Baidu (BIDU), and Twitter recorded advertising revenues of $16.6 billion, $3.1 billion, and $791 million, respectively, in the fourth quarter. Advertising revenue was $235 million at Yelp (YELP) in the fourth quarter.

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