No, Google didn’t just turn Google Photos into Google+. Instead, they’ve updated the app to include Shared Albums, meaning you will be able to upload photos to an album that all of your contacts can see. Public sharing is slightly different, as is posting to Facebook. This update allows friends and family – whomever you’ve added – to access a unique folder in your library. Others can share folders of theirs with you, too.
Once a user is added to an album and accepts the reality of their situation by clicking OK, they too will be able to add photos to said album. This will allow teams of photographers to share photos with their press affiliates. It’ll allow parents to share photos with other parents. It’ll let you share an album at a concert with a friend who is standing at the other side of the stage.
How helpful this feature will be will be entirely up to you, my friend. You must decide how best to use it.
The update to Google Photos that includes this feature will be out for iOS, Android, and desktop computers (automatically, through the web, of course,) as of this afternoon. Let us know if you get the update early!