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Google+ no longer necessary for other Google services, company announces

Google will no longer force users to have a Google+ profile if they want to use Google's other services, including Gmail and YouTube. The company will unlink the social networking profile from its other services over the next several months.

YouTube and Gmail integration will be phased out over next several weeks, company says

Google announced it would stop integrating users' Google+ profiles across its other services. (Adam Berry/Getty Images)

Google will no longer force users to have a Google+ profile for them to use Google's other services, including Gmail and YouTube.

The company will unlink the social networking profile from its other services over the next several months.

The company says it "got certain things right" when creating the network, but heard consumer feedback that widely criticized aspects of the social network.

"We made a few choices that, in hindsight, we needed to rethink," reads a blog post from Bradley Horowitz, Google's vice-president of streams, photos and sharing, .

One of those changes is to no longer link a user's Google+ account to all their other Google products.

​Horowitz says the company received feedback that "it doesn't make sense for your Google+ profile to be your identity in all the other Google products you use."

Instead of a Google+ profile, a user's plain, non-social-networking Google account will become their Google-wide identity. The shift will take several months, Horowitz says, and YouTube will be one of the first integrated products to make the switch.

YouTube now requires users have a Google+ profile if they want to upload videos, leave comments or create a channel, according to a blog post from the company. That will change in the next few weeks.

It didn't seem like many people will miss the integration of their Google+ profiles.

Many people had expressed frustration that the company was seemingly forcing them to create Google+ profiles to use other services.

Some didn't see the point of the social network in the first place.

Users who felt forced to create a Google+ profile but don't want to actively use it will have new options "for managing and removing those public profiles," Horowitz says.

But some defended the service, and weren't necessarily keen to delete their profiles.

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