Today Google annoucned the launch of their Friend Connect “Social Bar”. The tool enables users to comment on any page they visit on the web as long as it has the “Social Bar” enabled. Google describes the social bar as a “single strip that incorporates basic social features — sign in, site activity, a comment wall, and members — into streamlined, click-to-expand gadgets.
Facebook recently launched a feature which enabled commenting on external links. This appears to duplicate that functionality except that the “social bar” is implemented on a site-by-site basis. Webmasters can choose whether or not they would like the social bar to display at the top of their site or at the bottom of their site.
It’s interesting to see Google rolling out more internally-developed widgets. Honestly, I think this is one area where Google currently has a leg up over Facebook Connect. While Facebook Connect is open for all developers, implementing the service can be a time consuming process, and as I noted today on AllFacebook, the service can even stop working on occasion.
I’ve embedded a video of the service below so you can learn more.