Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Orkut: The Road Ahead

The new look-and-feel of Orkut is not at all appealing, not just to me but to everyone I talked to about this since the change. When all their competitors are coming up with new features everyday, all they could do was to put more colors wherever possible (and brighten the already used colors making it even worse). On this occasion I thought of writing what all I miss on Orkut:

1) Search in scrapbook: There is no doubt that the highest % of time spent on Orkut is spent on scrapping friends and other "wanna be friends". This is clearly led to exchange of information over scraps and where there is information, it needs a search tool. Though I think allowing searching through others scrapbook will be a security threat but searching on own scrapbook will be a real treat.

2) More number of Photos: Why in the world have they limited the no. of photos to 12? With Googles resources in place, there can't be a problem in terms of digital space available to them. When facebook is recording huge no. of images to be uploaded and MySpace buying photo sharing platform Photobucket, this is surely a big drawback. Also, I see a lot of "New pics uploaded" screen names, clearly indicating how much time we spend on checking others snaps. For me, this is the second highest activity I spend my time on (first is of course, scrapping).

3) Fan: Its too much trouble to become someones fan. Suppose I'm visiting a friends profile and I want to become his fan. The only way I can do this, go back to my profile, go to manage friends and then search him and then become his fan. (And with people changing their display names its tough to find, on a no. of occasions I couldn't :( )

Why can't there be a marking area in each of my friends profile? Simple? Isn't it?

Since past three years, when I joined Orkut, I haven't seen many big feature additions. A small poll app, or a blog or a change in their news section won't will make the road ahead tough and tough.

4) Messages: The most important of all the messaging in Orkut is almost useless due to the unlimited SPAM. I've seen a number of other sites where messaging is the strongest means of communication and I hardly read my messages on Orkut. This seriously needs to be revamped. Everything about it sucks as of now.

5) Communities: Many surveys have shown in past than most of the users (including me) have joined communities just show their interests/attributes and very few are actually active on them. Tagging would have done this for me. They seriously need to think some way to make it more useful.

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