X

Archive for News

Social Media News Roundup: August ’17 Week 2

social media news august 17 week 2
In the news this week - Facebook muscles into the online video scene, apple launches Instagram account and social media usage tops 3 billion…
Facebook muscles into the online video scene with Facebook Watch

Facebook have taken an officially stand to leap into the world of short-form professional online video with Watch, a new platform for shows on Facebook. Watch is somewhat of a late arrival to the online-video scene, however Facebook is currently second only to YouTube for internet video - so the likelihood is that if it takes of (and that is a big if) it will take off in a big way.

Over 30 different production partners have been announced, including MLB, A&E and Hearst. According to the announcement on their newsroom, they intend to see a wide range of shows on Watch, including reality shows, comedy and live sports. They said this:

“We think Watch will be a home to a wide range of shows… To help inspire creators and seed the ecosystem, we’ve also funded some shows that are examples of community-oriented and episodic video series… We’re excited to see how creators and publishers use shows to connect their fans and community.”

Apple launches Instagram account to showcase iPhone photography

The term “Shot on iPhone” has become synonymous with Apple Inc.’s marketing. Now the tech giant has created an Instagram account devoted to celebrating and promoting iPhone photography. The reasons are pretty clear - if there is any logical place to promote photography, it is the world’s largest photo-sharing app.

Instagram now commands a staggering 700 million active users a month. You can check out the new account @apple. For the time being at least, it looks like Apple plan on using the account to build community-centred marketing - at the time of writing their bio currently reads “Welcome to @apple. Tag #ShotoniPhone to take part.” Already the account commands over 500k followers

Combined social media usage passes the 3 billion users mark

The latest combined research from Hootsuite and We Are Social has reveal that the number of people using social media across the world now rests at 3.028 billion - and shows no sign of stopping. This is up four percent since last quarter, an increase of 121 million users, 113 million more than the amount of new adopters of the internet in general. Active social media users are now growing at a rate of one million per day.

Facebook, Whatsapp and Snapchat feature among list of worst apps for battery draining

A report by Avast into the most battery-draining Android apps included (perhaps a little unsurprisingly) Facebook, Whatsapp and Snapchat. These were listed among other feature-rich apps such as Netflix and Google Maps. To see the full list and read Avast’s recommendations for making your battery last the longest it possibly can, check out this article on The Independent.

Social Media News Roundup: August ’17 Week 1

social media news august 2017 week 1
In the news this week - Facebook heralds faster webpages, Instagram Stories celebrates first birthday and celebrities on Twitter are robots...
Facebook update gives preference to faster loading web pages

An upcoming Facebook update will soon give preferential treatment to faster loading web pages. Facebook has announced that throughout the next few months it will be rolling out an update to News Feed that will effectively serve up more stories that load quicker on mobile - and less stories that don’t. In the update Facebook’s algorithm will begin to take into account estimated load time for links within the mobile app.

Facebook have stated that as the update gradually rolls out they anticipate that the majority of Pages won’t witness any significant changes to their own distribution. That said, business users will noticeably slower-loading webpages may see a decrease in referrals, so now is a good a time as any to work to improve site speed and mobile optimisation.

Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism to hold first meeting

Last month Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter and YouTube formed the Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism, in a bid to “formalise and structure how companies work together to curtail the spread of terrorism and violent extremism [across] hosted consumer services” (Twitter).

On 1st August 2017 the first official workshop will be held in San Francisco, gathering tech industry representatives and both government and non-governmental organisations to share data and best practices to counter the threat of extremist content online.

Instagram Stories becomes one year old

On Wednesday 2nd August Instagram Stories officially reached one year of service. Instagram marked the milestone with a post on their official press blog. Within Stories’s first year, Instagram have rolled out more than 20 new features and tools, such as stickers and Boomerang capabilities.

Data now shows that over half of business users now utilise Instagram Stories as part of their social media marketing strategy, overtaking Snapchat. Findings also show that one in five organic Stories from businesses result in a direct message as response.

LinkedIn Lite launched across 60+ countries

In a bid to expand accessibility for members on an International scale, LinkedIn Lite mobile web and Android app has been launched to over 60 countries across the world. Included in the launch were Nigeria, the Philippines and South Africa, amongst others. LinkedIn Lite is marketed as a “lighter, faster version of [the LinkedIn] flagship product and includes all key features such as the news feed, messaging and notifications.”

Facebook to increase use of third-party fact checkers

Facebook is to begin utilising a new, cutting-edge machine learning algorithm to flag up articles bearing the hallmarks of being agenda-driven, the latest addition in their bid to tackle “fake news”. Flagged articles can then be further reviewed by human fact-checkers. Facebook news feed product manager Sara Su said:

“In addition to seeing which stories are disputed by third-party fact checkers, people want more context to make informed decisions about what they read and share.”

Study finds celebrity Twitter accounts act like bots

A new study from the University of Cambridge has shown that celebrity Twitter accounts with more than 10 million followers display more bot-like behavior than those with fewer followers. Students analysed a total of 3,535 accounts and determined that of those 1,525 were bots and 2,010 were humans.

Researchers then created an algorithm that utilises 21 features to pinpoint bots. They then discovered that celebrity accounts share some of these features. Cambridge PhD student Zafar Galani, who led the research, said:

“A Twitter user can be a human and still be a spammer, and an account can be operated by a bot and still be benign… Bots typically tweet a lot and upload content in order to gain attention of their audience. Celebrities too do exactly that, but instead of uploading depersonalised content, like bots do, they upload and share content and news from their daily lives.”

Social Media News Roundup: July ’17 Week 3

social media news july 17 week 3
In the news this week - Twitter updates users on safety, Amazon is building its own messaging app and Snapchat will have a daily news show...
Twitter updates users on work to make network safer

A recent post on Twitter’s official blog provides data on products introduced to increase safety and limit abuse on the network since January. The article states increased action on abusive accounts as a key signifier for progress. Twitter now cites taking action of ten times the number of abusive accounts every day compared to this time last year.

The post also mentions driving change in behaviour through limiting account reach, and providing personalised controls for users to customise their experience. According to Ed Ho, general manager, consumer product and engineering, what can be expected now is more improvement, transparency and speed.

“While there is still much work to be done, people are experiencing significantly less abuse on Twitter today than they were six months ago… Online safety is an issue best solved in partnership with others, so we’ll continue to collaborate with our Trust & Safety Council, industry experts, and academics to solicit ongoing feedback.”

LinkedIn data shows best content types for maximum engagement

LinkedIn has published data that shows the content types that employees should be sharing for maximum engagement rates. Employee advocacy strategies are often the most successful when it comes to extending your brand reach across social networks, particularly for professional networks such as LinkedIn.

According to data by LinkedIn Elevate, SlideShare presentations are the most popular type of content for sharing. In the past year, SlideShares received 44% more shares than other content types. Other successful content types are those that grab attention, and rather unsurprisingly video content sees around 6% more engagement than articles, images and SlideShares.

Amazon Spark looks like Instagram for e-commerce

Amazon’s latest mobile app feature is a scrollable feed of photos and captions uploaded by other users with links to product pages, reminiscent of an Instagram for e-commerce. With Amazon Spark, Amazon is working to turn reviewers into advocates and influencers within its own unique community.

While the feature does feel like Instagram and Pinterest, it has some advanced features geared towards e-commerce. Most notably, products within posts are linked through to their respective pages on Amazon, so users can make immediate informed purchases via click-throughs. It functions like a shoppable Instagram feed, including products related to pre-approved categories by the user.

Amazon is building its own stand-alone messaging app

Amazon is reportedly working on its own full-feature, stand-alone messaging app that is compatible across desktop and mobile devices. Suggestions have been made that the so-called Anytime app will be an all-in-one service, enabling a whole host of different features such as group messaging, photo and video sharing and games. It is also likely to allow users to engage with other Amazon services such as shopping and Amazon Music.

NBC News is producing a daily news show for Snapchat

Beginning next Wednesday, NBC News will be producing and broadcasting a live news show called Stay Tuned twice a day for Snapchat. According to sources, the show is the latest in developments by parent company Snap Inc. towards making the network a go-to destination for exclusive shows.

Each edition of Stay Tuned will cover the day’s biggest news stories in a crisp two-three minute segment. The company’s head of original content Sean Mills believes that Stay Tuned also represents an increased focus for Snap on the specific genre of news. Of their ambitions, he said:

“Our ambition is very much that when something happens in the world or there’s a news event, that our audience would turn  to Snapchat increasingly to get that news.”

Social Media News Roundup: June ‘17 Week 4

Social media news roundup june 17 week 4
In the news this week - Facebook announces new features for group admins and Instagram wants to buddy up with Hollywood movie stars...
Facebook is adding new features for group admins

On Thursday 22nd of June Facebook held their first Communities Summit in Chicago. Attended by hundreds of group admins, at it Facebook announced several new features to help users grow and manage their groups. According to a post on the Newsroom, more than 1 billion people around the world use Groups, with over 100 million being members of “meaningful groups” - those that quickly become a central part of their experience on the social network.

Among the features announced were Group Insights, offering admins real-time growth, engagement and membership metrics, membership request filtering, post scheduling and group-to-group linking. Full details of all of the updates can be found on this post.

Facebook trialling new tools to deter profile picture misuse in India

Facebook have added an optional ‘Picture Guard’ tool for users in India in a bid to deter profile picture misuse on the network. According to a post on Facebook’s Newsroom, when an extra design layer is added to a picture other people are 75% less likely to copy it.

The guard tool effectively renders pictures less accessible. Those with the tool added cannot be downloaded and people you aren’t friends with cannot tag people in it. Alongside that, on Android devices Facebook prevents the use of screenshots. Facebook have said that they will use their experience with the tool in India to consider expansion to other countries.

Facebook offering free advertising to anti-terror groups

Facebook will give free advertising credit to anti-terror groups in a bid to crack down on radical propaganda and terror across the network. The social network has previously been criticised for not doing enough to counter extremism. The new initiative is being referred to as a “counter speech” campaign and will be focussed in the UK. Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer, announced that they will give advertising credit to groups such as the Institute for Strategic Dialogue. Announcing the initiative, she said:

“No one should have to live in fear of terrorism, and we all have a part to play in stopping violent extremism from spreading… There is no place for hate or violence on Facebook. Partnerships with others - including tech companies, civil society, researchers and governments - are a crucial piece of the puzzle.”

Instagram looks set to bolster ties with Hollywood influencers

Facebook is currently looking to engage with Hollywood celebrities and direct them to its Instagram unit, in a bid to keep pace with YouTube video content and fend off Snap. Celebrities and high-profile users play a crucial role in encouraging audience growth.  

Looking at a job ad on LinkedIn, Instagram are hiring for a new executive in Los Angeles to help  “drive high impact and authentic use of Instagram for public figures” leading “outreach efforts with entertainment industry influencers”.

Instagram expands options for live videos with Stories

Instagram now offer users the option to share a replay of their live videos to Instagram Stories. According to a post on their press site, millions of people have used live since it's introduction in November. Once a live broadcast has ended, users will be able to tap “Share” at the bottom of the screen and a replay will be available on Stories for 24 hours.

Social Media News Roundup: May ’17 Week 4

social media news roundup may 2017 week 4
In the news this week - Twitter adds 69 new emojis, Facebook allows fundraising for personal causes and Instagram begins to understand links…
Twitter adds 69 new emojis, becoming the first social network to support Emoji 5.0

Twitter has become the first social networking site to support the newest round of emojis, finalised in March. Included are separate flags for England, Scotland and Wales, chopsticks, steak, a porcupine and a zebra.

The newest round of emojis, known as Emoji 5.0, was released only last week. Twitter’s custom set is known as Twemoji and includes all 69 images of the latest update (239 with skin tone variations and duplicates.) Support for Emoji 5.0 currently isn’t available on iOS or Android devices - so the new lineup of emojis are only available on Twitter’s desktop site for the time being.

Facebook expands Fundraisers to allows user to raise money for personal causes

Facebook has expanded its fundraising feature to allow users to more easily raise cash for a variety of causes, including personal causes. With Fundraisers, Facebook look to take on popular crowdfunding services such as Just Giving and Go Fund Me. Crowdfunding campaigns already rely on social media marketing to be successful, and with Facebook appearing to take a smaller percentage than other options, it could be something of a no-brainer feature.

Fundraisers began testing in March and have recently been developed to allow users to fund raise for a number of other personal causes. These include educational supplies, medical procedures, personal emergencies, and community projects. In an article on its Newsroom, Facebook said this:

“People can create a fundraiser to quickly raise money on Facebook and easily reach their friends in a few taps, without leaving Facebook, and can share fundraisers to help build momentum. People can learn about the person who created the fundraiser and the person benefiting from the fundraiser, as well as see which friends have donated.”

Twitter Apple TV app supports live, 360 degree video and Periscope’s global map

Twitter has updated its Apple TV app with some new, significant features. It has now become the first Apple TV app to support live 360 degree video, which makes use of the Siri remote to move the video and view from different angles, offering a more immersive viewing experience. Twitter is making significant inroads into the live streaming market, including announcing earlier this month a series of live shows from Viacom, Live Nation, BuzzFeed and WNBA amongst others.

Alongside premium live content, viewers on the Twitter app for Apple TBV will also have the option to explore via the added Periscope map. This will allow them to find user-generated live content, both standard and 360, from across the globe.

Instagram expands direct messaging with support for links and raw photo sharing

At last count, Instagram direct messaging was seeing around 375 million monthly active users, and that number is undoubtedly growing. In response, the social network has now added a couple of new features intended to make it a more useful messaging option. Support has been added for external web links, and now inclues inline previews for URLs.

Alongside supporting links, Instagram users are also now able to send original, unedited photo and video content with other users. The ability to send photos in their original aspect ratios will reduce the amount of time users will have to spend on external messaging platforms. These updates are currently rolling out to iOS users and will be coming to Android soon.

Twitter launches DM cards for brands, a new way to promote their chatbots

Twitter have launched a new way for brands to promote and share the bots and customer experiences they have created. Direct Message Cards can be customised to help drive discovery of these experiences via Promoted Tweets or organic posting. DM cards can be embedded with custom image of video creatives and up to four call-to-action buttons.

One of the launch partners for this new feature is Patrón Tequila. They are using DM cards to help drive discovery of its messaging bot. So-called ‘Bot-Tender’ creates personalised cocktail recommendations based on a users responses to questions about occasions and flavours, amongst other things.

Instagram announces location-based stories for Explore and adds an ‘archive’ option

Finally, Instagram have announced the roll out of Location Stories for its Explore page - after a similar feature was (rather unsurprisingly) released by Snapchat less than two months ago. By enabling users to search for Stories from strangers whose privacy settings are set to public based on their location, Instagram offers users another level of discover-ability for their Stories content.

Alongside location-based stories, Instagram have added an ‘Archive’ option in the hope to deter permanent deletion of out-dated or under-performing posts.

Social Media News Roundup: May ’17 Week 2

social media news roundup may 17 week 2
In the news this week - Twitter signs deal to live-stream NFL content, Instagram allows uploads from it's mobile site and that guy who really wanted some chicken nuggets gets some chicken nuggets...
Twitter signs deal to stream NFL content (but no games)

Twitter may have missed out on the chance to live stream NFL’s Thursday Night Football games to Amazon, however they have bagged themselves a deal to stream specific content on the network. The agreement will allow Twitter to stream a selection of official NFL video content to users, including a 30-minute digital show, airing five nights a week during the season.

Alongside the exclusive digital show, NFL coverage by Twitter will include Periscope broadcasts of pre and post-match snippets, such as warm-ups and interviews. NFL reported James Palmer tweeted about the sort of content that will be included:

New LinkedIn feature uses location information to suggest nearby users

LinkedIn has introduced a new feature intended to “maximise the benefits of Linkedin… [and] provide you with opportunities to network with other LinkedIn members at conferences, events and more in your proximity.” Once privacy settings are enabled to allow as such, it will use mobile location information to share profile information with nearby users.

The new feature could certainly improve discoverability at networking events if used correctly. Once enabled, the names and profiles of first-level connections nearby will pop up.

New Facebook partnership looks to bolster 360-degree video

A new partnership between Facebook and Blend Media looks to create a “creator community” of 360-degree video project workers. Blend Media is a tech platform that works alongside brands, agencies and publishers, and through the partnership Facebook will have access to their premium content library. Likewise, Blend Media will have unique access to the social network’s 360 team.

The partnership is important because unlike other styles of video, user-generated 360-degree video isn't really a thing yet. Although conventional video content is still noticeably more engaging that 360, over half of buyers and sellers in the UK believe that it will prove one of the best revenue streams over the next 12 months. Founder and CEO of Blend Media, Damian Collier, said this:

“Consumers both expect and deserve high quality engaging content, and no medium is more engaging than 360-degree video and VR. As a relatively new format, there’s a need to help nurture and support the creator community in the 360-degree video space…
Facebook’s commitment to driving innovation in video could not be more apparent. They also understand more than anyone that users are increasingly engaging with 360-degree and VR content, in many cases watching 360-degree video for considerably longer than fixed video,”

Twitter embraces AI to power tweet recommendations

Twitter has joined the likes of Facebook, Google and Microsoft in embracing the power of artificial inteligence with new technology that better provides accurate tweet recommendations for users. The social network is making use of deep learning, which involves the “training” of software through repetition and variables.

Until now Twitter’s tweet recommendations were based on a far less advanced algorithm. However, with the addition of more intelligent AI systems, they hope to boost engagement rates and time spent on the social network by its users.

Chicken nugget addict breaks re-tweet world record

The world record for the most re-tweeted tweet ever, originally held by Elle DeGeneres for the famous Oscar Selfie, has been broken by a guy who really wanted free chicken nuggets. We won’t go into all the details, because it really is that simple. Carter Wilkerson’s tweet reached 3,430,249 retweets on Tuesday, enough to bag himself a year’s free supply of chicken nuggets alongside a donation of $100,000 to a charity by US fast food chain Wendy’s in his name.

Instagram rolls out sharing from its mobile site

Finally, Instagram has rolled out the ability to upload images direct from it’s mobile sight. The upgrade also included a light version of the Explore tab. Although there is still no posting available via the desktop version, by inspecting their webpage users can view the mobile sight and upload images from their desktop computer. See the process in the video below.

Social Media News Roundup: May ’17 Week 1

social media news roundup  may 17 week 1
In the news this week - Facebook tests new loyalty rewards scheme, Twitter’s TV app made available on Roku and Pinterest releases top 10 travel destinations…
Facebook rolls out emoji reactions for comments

Facebook users are now able to react to comments on posts with an emoji. Reaction emojis were first released a year ago, offering users the ability to respond to posts with the expressions ‘Love, ‘Haha’, ‘Wow’, ‘Sad’ and ‘Angry’, however they have only recently began offering this feature for comments too.

The feature has only just introduced the functionality. For that reason, not every user will be able to make use of it just yet. A spokesperson for the company said:

“We’ve heard from people they’d like more ways to show their reaction in conversations on Facebook, so we’re rolling out the ability to react to comments.”

Facebook tests new loyalty rewards scheme

Facebook is trialling a new rewards scheme that allows users access to a personalised QR code that can be scanned at certain shops to give them access to discounts and loyalty rewards. The feature was spotted by Techcrunch and can be found under the More section on the mobile app. However it is currently only appearing for a small subset of users.

As yet, it isn’t clear what kind of discounts will be available through the scheme. The new feature could be evidence of Facebook trying to encourage more advertisers onto the network by providing them with the ability to track advertising to the point of sale. This is an area that Snapchat has recently invested in with the release of ‘Snap to Store’. When approached about the feature, Facebook said:

“To help businesses continue to connect with customers where they are, we’re running a small test that enables people to use the Facebook app to collect and redeem rewards when they make a purchase at a participating store.”

Security warning issued over “10 concerts” Facebook meme

Security experts are warning Facebook users against engaging with the popular ‘10 concerts’ post meme, which could be a clever phishing attempt. The viral posts encourages users to share a list of nine concerts that they have been to alongside one they have. However, it could be a hackers attempt to discover a crucial piece of important information from users - the first concert they went to - which just so happens to be one of Facebook’s security questions.

Google and Facebook now control one-fifth of global ad-spend

Research shows that last year Google and Facebook accounted for one-fifth of global advertising spend - almost double the figure of five years ago. According to data and analysis agency Zenith, Google attracted $79.4bn in ad revenues last year, while Facebook pulled in $26.9bn. Internet-only media companies are currently dominating the market, forcing traditional publishers far behind.

Twitter’s TV video app now available on Roku

Twitter has taken yet another step forward in positioning itself as a video platform by releasing an app on supported devices that allows users to access live video streams - even without an account. Already available on Apple TV, Xbox One and Amazon Fire TV devices, the latest device to receive the app is streaming TV and media player Roku.

Pinterest and Airbnb release the top 10 trending travel destinations

Pinterest has teamed up with Airbnb to bring users a list of the top trending travel destinations on the network right now, alongside some awesome places to stay in those locations. Some might come as something of a surprise to users. In reverse order, they are…

10. Barcelona, Spain
9. Santorini, Greece
8. New York City, USA
7. Bora Bora, French Polynesia
6. Kyoto, Japan
5. Reykjavic, Iceland
4. Highlands, Scotland
3. Courchevel, France
2. Tenerife, Canary Islands
1. Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt

Social Media News Roundup: April ’17 Week 4

social media news roundup
In the news this week - Instagram reaches 700 million users, Pinterest looks to reinvent itself and Twitter wants to live-stream 24/7…
Twitter shares rise as users grow at higher-than-expected rates

Shares in Twitter surged more than 10 percent this week. Alongside better than projected revenues and earnings, investors cited an increase in users. The social network, which struggled to grow its user-base in line with rival networks throughout 2016, said it was “proud to report… accelerating growth in daily active usage for the fourth consecutive quarter, up 14 percent year over year.”

Although no actual numbers were released for daily active users on the network, Twitter announced that monthly active users were  9m more than the previous quarter at 328m, 7m more than expected. Chief executive Jack Dorsey said this:

“While we continue to face revenue headwinds, we believe that executing on our plan and growing our audience should result in positive revenue growth over the long term.”

Twitter’s ambitions to live-stream 24 hours a day

Twitter is making a stand to increase its dominance in the world of social networking live streaming with plans to broadcast news, sports and entertainment 24 hours a day. Twitter COO and CFO Anthony Noto spoke about the company’s ambitions in an extensive interview with BuzzFeed News:

“We will definitely have 24/7 content on Twitter… Our goal is to be a dependable place so that when you want to see what’s happening, you think of going to Twitter.”

New app helps Instagram users choose a caption for their photo

Former Made In Chelsea star Amber Atherton has launched an iOS app that uses computer vision technology to offer up potential captions for photos. Rubric, which has already been downloaded over 7,000 times, attempts to detect what is in a photo, allows users to choose a subject, before suggesting captions such as quotes, phrases and song lyrics.

Instagram reaches 700 million users

Instagram looks set to be Facebook’s next venture to reach 1 billion users. The social networking app has gained an additional 100 million monthly active users in the last four months, putting the total at 700 million active users a month. The team said this on the Instagram Press Blog:

We’ve made it even easier for people across the globe to join the Instagram community, share their experiences and strengthen connections to their friends and passions. With new features like stories, live video and disappearing messages in Direct, people now have more ways than ever to express themselves and feel closer to what matters to them.

Pinterest looks to reinvent itself with major ad campaign

Pinterest is hoping to reinvent itself as a visual search engine and not a social network in its first major ad campaign this summer. Unlike networks such as Facebook which are looking to virtual reality, Pinterest wants to inspire real lives. CEO Ben Silbermann said this:

“I hope that Pinterest would someday be so useful to people they could so reliably get inspiring ideas that they wouldn’t be able to imagine how they used to just go through life and find inspiration for things.”

Social Media News Roundup: April ’17 Week 3

social media news roundup april 17 week 3
In the news this week - major announcements from F8 Facebook Developer Conference and Instagram automation crackdown…
Mind-reading brain-computer typing interface

Perhaps the biggest reveal of Facebook’s F8 conference was the announcement that the company’s immensely secretive Building 8 R&D lab were working on a direct brain-to-computer interface which would allow users to type by thinking. Intentions to create this kind of technology has been hinted to in the past when the research division posted job ads for Brain-Computer Interface Engineers and similar.

Facebook’s vision is to be able to optically scan a human brain 100 times per second and convert that to into text at 100 words per minute - that is five times faster than conventional phone typing. It’s safe to say that this technology is in its (very) early stages but it could one day spell major developments to VR and AR.

Augmented reality developer platform

Facebook announced the launch of an augmented reality camera effects developer platform, allowing outside developers to contribute AR filters to the network. Facebook is clear that allowing developers access to the platform will benefit them by offering a much more diverse array of experiences.

Alongside the options for developers to soon be creating on the AR tool, right now anybody is able to make use of Facebook’s Frame Studio to create image filters that will appear on Facebook Camera to friends or page fans.

AI-powered additions to Facebook insights

Facebook have updated analytics in a way that make it easier for users to monitor important metrics and better appreciate the value of certain insights at a glance. They are integrating machine learning into the platform, opening up new opportunities for granular analysis and monitoring.

At the centre of the updates to Analytics announced at F8 was AI powered automated insights. Engineering manager Amit Finkelstein said this:

“With this new feature, you’ll see insights such as changes in purchases for a new version of your app or variations in engagement across people in different cities. Getting to these insights quickly and in an automated way helps you easily identify where to dig deeper and determine a plan of action.”

Launch of VR hangout platform Spaces

Facebook Spaces, a social VR hangout space, has been launched in beta for Oculus Rift + Touch. It is significant as it is the leading social network’s first significant integration of social virtual reality. into its core product. In the app, up to four friends are able to join a space, draw, chat, watch 360 videos and take VR selfies in a quirky and fun environment.

Messenger bots for groups, Messenger QR codes and bot discovery tab

Facebook has launched three new, significant ways to allow user to find and engage with bots on Messenger. Chat extensions allow users access to Messenger bots in group chats - such as sports ticker bots and collaborative Spotify playlists - whereas the discover tab addresses the discovery issue faced by developers for quite a while. Now users are able to discover “recently used bots [and] popular experiences”.

Facebook have also added new parametric QR codes for Messenger bots. In their newsroom post, they said this:

“Our new parametric QR codes will enable people whenever they are out and about at events, like at basketball games and concerts, to be able to find out more from a bot for Messenger, just by simply scanning the code in the Messenger camera."

Instagram offline mode for Android

Users of Instagram’s Android app have been given an offline mode. At F8 the social network announced it wanted to offer support for using most of its features without internet access and much of this is now available on Android; the preferred device type in the developing world. Instagram say that more is coming in future months and the prospect of an iOS offline version is also in the pipeline.

Could this be partly in response to Snapchat’s CEOs ill-advised comments on their user-ship as a way of Instagram cementing their support for users in developing world? Almost certainly.

Instagram taking the fight to spammy automation software

After months of spammy auto-comments, Instagram are cracking down on fake account activity created by bot software, beginning with the closing of third-party automation service Instagress. Instagress, which allows automatically likes and comments on other photos, was forced to shut down on Thursday. Needless to say, for genuine users the prospect of a mass-exodus of bot activity on Instagram is just terrific.

Social Media News Roundup: April ’17 Week 2

social media news april 17 week 2
In the news this week - Snapchat announce new product, Twitter tests a complaints bot and a guy is 15m RTs away from a lifetime of chicken nuggets…
New Snapchat product confirms whether ads increase foot traffic

Snap is launching a significant new product which will allow businesses to see whether users visit their stores after seeing their advertisements on the app. Snap to Store looks at the number of people who visit a store within a week of viewing a vertical-orientated mobile ad on the social network.

This new product could enable marketers to correlate their campaign with genuine foot traffic in a much more significant and reliable way. Currently only used by select stores in the US, it makes use of location tracking via GPS to determine users’ movements.

Survey suggests Snapchat still teens’ favourite app

A recent survey of teenagers by Piper Jaffray has confirmed that, despite Facebook’s continual casual thievery of its products, Snapchat continues to be the app of choice for young people.

According to the research 81% of US teens said they use Snapchat every month. 39% confirmed that it is their favourite app, a fairly substantial figure when compared to the next biggest Instagram at 23%.

Twitter support testing a complaints bot

Twitter has begun testing a customer service bot to help handle questions and complaints via the company’s @support account. It can now serve automated replies to basic queries around five specific topics. According to Buzzfeed News, these include account impersonation and abuse reporting. A company spokesperson said this:

"We're testing a new @Support DM tool to make it easier for people to get help with certain support issues, directly on Twitter. This is a very early test and will be limited in scope for the time being."

Carter Wilkerson a mere 15 million retweets away from a year’s supply of chicken nuggets

A teenager from Nevada is (probably not) on the way to landing himself a year’s supply of chicken nuggets from American fast food chain Wendy’s. Carter Wilkerson, a self professed nuggs lover, may well set a new world record for retweets after reaching out to the restaurant, asking how many retweets he’d need to land himself a year of free nuggets.

The current world record for retweets is held by Ellen DeGeneres - the famous oscar selfie - which has more than 3.3m retweets. One Twitter user has estimated that a year’s supply of nuggets would cost Wendy’s around $650 dollars - whereas 18m retweets would be worth around $72,000 in advertising.

1 2 3 4 5 6 13

Contact us

Get in touch and claim your FREE proposal today

Just want to have a chat?

Phone: 02392 819051
Address: Unit 3, 373/375 Old Commercial Road, Portsmouth, Hampshire, PO1 4QG