If Google wants to grow the user base for its social networking platform Google+ by targeting the business segment, an API might be just the thing. To that end, Google recently brought its Google+ Domains API out of beta. Now developers everywhere can use the API to integrate Google+ functions and services into their existing business tools.
The API, originally announced in May, can act on behalf of Google Apps users to share posts, manage circles and more. (In case you are not a Google+ user, Circles is a key feature that lets you group people based on what you want to share.) The Google+ Domains API also lets Google Apps administrators auto-provision the circles of new employees. And according to this FAQ, comment moderation is possible, but post deletion is not.
And so that Google+ users can distinguish profiles from within an organization from those outside, Google has added domain labels. These are small profile labels that indicate a Google App user’s domain. (You were probably wondering what the "domains" part of the API was all about.)
How are companies putting the Google+ Domains API to use? Google announced two launch partners who are using the API to build in-house solutions. CloudLock, an enterprise software vendor, uses the API to integrate Google+ support with its data loss prevention, governance and compliance apps. Internet grocery retailer Ocado is using the API to sync Active Directory teams with its employee circle as a way to keep circles auto-populated and up-to-date.
The Google+ Domains API is open for any developer to use, but you must be a member of Google Apps to use the API applications.
Google introduced Google+ in June 2011 as a way to go after a share of the social networking market. Google+ still has a long way to go to catch up with Facebook, but Google+ Domains API appears to be a sound strategy for zeroing in on the corporate crowd.