On Thursday, July 7th, Speaking at a press event at the Allen & Co conference in Sun Valley, Idaho, Google's Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt gave a 70 minute talk about various topical Google issues, including the most topical of Google issues, the launch of Google+.
Schmidt seemed pleased that people seemed to understand that Google+ was different than Facebook.
With the Google+ user base already in the millions and growing, Google is planning heavy investments in it and will eventually use Plus as the infrastructure behind all of the company's products.
Schmidt said Google is pleased with the early response to Plus and is planning to use its core identity and "circles" features across Google products.
"Circles is particularly well suited to the contact list you have in your phone, we have a somewhat different view of privacy. We tried to build a system that you could use for the relationships over time. The people who built the Internet didn't get a stable version of identity; You need identity, in the sense that you're a person, this's who you're these're your friends and so on … The issue on the Internet is not the lack of Facebook, the issue on the Internet is the lack of identity."
When asked by reporters whether Google planned eventually to fill out Google+ with other products, Schmidt answered, "Yeah, and there's a lot coming," saying that business accounts and ads are expected, assuming Google+ continues to grow. "We test stuff and when it works we put a lot more emphasis on it," he said.
"The current inclination of the company," Schmidt said, "is to invest heavily … we test stuff and, when it works, we put a lot more emphasis on it. So, Google+ -- all the signs are very positive, so now the whole company is ramping up on top of it."
When pressed to reveal how many people were part of the Google+ beta currently Schmidt replied, "I don't know but it's millions, it's a lot."
When asked by a reporter how he would gauge the success of Google+ Schmidt replied, validly, "Well it's been out for a week!" before going on to say that the biggest marker of its success was the fact that "An infinite amount of people are unhappy because they don't have their invitation." He later went on to say that the amount of people who had invitations but weren't let in because of high demand was the greatest problem the service was facing. "We're reviewing it on Monday," he said.
You hear Schmidt in the video interview embedded below: