Google+ is already popular, and it isn’t yet showing any signs of slowing down. If you’re already in, or if you’re eagerly awaiting an invite, there are a few ways you can improve the experience when accessing Google’s new social network from Mac and iOS devices.
Create a Google+ Mac app with Fluid. Earlier this week I talked about the newest version of Fluid, which lets you create full-screen web apps for Lion using specific websites. Even if you don’t have Lion, Fluid is a great way to create a Google+ application that looks and feels more like a native Mac app than a website. You can even grab a nice Google+ icon to use with your Fluid app, like this one from deviantart user KillaAaron.
Better interaction with bookmarklets and extensions. You can change how Google+ looks and how it behaves with custom extensions for Chrome and other browsers. Go2Web20 has a great list of some of the best tools out there. One of the best is a +1 extension that lets you save any web page you come across to your +1 list in Google+, but that specific link on the Go2Web20 site is currently broken, so check out this similar option from the Chrome web store instead. If you’re not using Chrome, you can grab this bookmarklet for +1 recommendations that should work with most other browsers.
Import your iPhoto albums with Picasa for Mac. You’ve got a lot of iPhoto events, and now you want to share those photos on Google+, which actually has a great photo viewer. Apple has built Facebook support into iPhoto, but obviously there’s no direct method for getting that content to Google+. But with Picasa’s free native Mac app, you can import your iPhoto content and share it to your Picasa Web Albums right from your desktop. Depending on your sharing choices, the pictures will be visible in your Google+ galleries.
Use third-party Picasa apps to upload your photos. There’s no instant upload for iPhones and iPads as there is for Android devices. But you can get your photos from your mobile to your Google+ account without having to upload to a computer first. Just choose one of the available iOS Picasa photo uploading tools, like Web Albums, and then upload the pic you want to share to a public gallery on Picasa. Once you’ve done that, navigate to the photo in the Google+ mobile browser app and comment on the photo to share it to your stream.
Bookmarklets for sharing. For sharing sites and saving content to your +1 list, bookmarklets that work with mobile Safari are your best bet. The one I mentioned above should work for your iOS devices, too.
Share from desktop to mobile. You can use Google+ as a handy way to quickly share links between your desktop and mobile devices, by adding an email address that you have registered on your smartphone to one of your sharing circles on Google+. So, for instance, you could create an iPhone reading list and re-share interesting links in your Google stream to a specific circle called “for iPhone” that just contains your own email address, or you could set up a circle with the email addresses of your coworkers or project team for easy forwarding of interesting links and notes.
Google+ will likely improve as it iterates, and it will offer even more avantages for Mac and iOS users, especially when (and if) Apple approves the official Google+ iOS application. But even at this early stage, I’ve found that it enriches my computing experience on any Apple platform. Any advice you can add based on your own use of Google+?