According to a post on the unofficial Google Operating System blog, Google redesigned the account sign up process and now requires users to create a Google Profile, a Gmail account, and automatically join Google+. This will certainly help the continued growth of Google+ that currently sits around 90 million users, along with 350 million active Gmail users, according to Larry Page’s announcement during the Google’s Q4 2011 earnings call.
Before the redesign that has not yet rolled out to everyone, users could create an account by simply entering an email address or creating a Gmail account. According to the report, the new form requires users to fill out a name, gender, and optionally a mobile phone number. However, perhaps the most significant change is the fact that new Google account holders will have a Google+ account created automatically, and they will have to fill out a Google Profile during the sign up process. Users can still delete their Google+ and Google Profile if they wish. They will also be able to delete Gmail after creating an account. The change seems to have rolled out only through Google’s homepage and a few services, with the old sign up form still accessible elsewhere.
Google explained on the new page:
“Your Google Account is more than just Search. Talk, chat, share, schedule, store, organize, collaborate, discover and create. Use Google products from Gmail to Google+ to YouTube, view your search history, all with one username and password, all backed up all the time and easy to find at (you guessed it) Google.com.”