You don't need me to tell you that Google is (again) attempting to carve out a place in the social networking oligarchy. Having tried and failed with Wave and Buzz, the search giant has re-grouped and come up with Google+, a much more Facebook-like offering, currently available on an invitation-only basis.

I've seen it, read a lot about it, and know people who have been invited to open Google+ accounts. However, like millions of other I haven't had an invite yet. Moreover, when I do I'll add it to the others I seem to have accumulated over the years (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter etc.) but I doubt I'll use it that much. After all I have enough trouble keeping up as it is - Google+ could be the straw to break this camel's back.

But then there's the business angle. The use of social networking tools to promote products and services continues to grow, with Google keen to get a slice of this action. And it's here rather than in the consumer space that I think it stands to make an impact.

Partly because it's late to the party and ought to be able to avoid the mistakes both of others and its previous attempts to get in the social game. But also because it has a large and established base of business customers for its peerless search tools, Google Adwords, cloud-based productivity suite (Google Apps) and much more.

Not to mention all those millions of Gmail users, whereas Facebook has only just begun to deliver email to its subscriber base.

Unfortunately the business service is still some way off being ready. But it shouldn't be long with Google recommending businesses ignore invites to the consumer version for now and wait for the real deal later in the year. 

This article is written by Alan Stevens and sponsored by Avaya. The opinions reflected in this piece are solely those of Alan Stevens and may not reflect those of Avaya management