Tuesday Tune-Up #247
Facebook Messenger reaches the 1bn mark
More than one billion people are now using Facebook Messenger, according to a post on the company’s blog. Facebook wants you to celebrate by sending a balloon emoji to your loved ones. Turns out the whole world might not be clued up to this and sending balloons to people just causes confusion…
Facebook owns 67% of social media ad spend
Where did all the money go? To Facebook it seems, according to eMarketer’s latest research. More than two thirds of ad revenues spent on social are going to the social sharing giant. eMarketer estimates that Facebook will take in $22.37 billion in net ad revenues this year, up from $17.08 billion in 2015.
Facebook tests floating drones to ‘beam down’ the internet
Aquila, Facebook’s first internet drone, has had its first test flight. The drone, which will ‘beam down’ the internet to areas with no access to wifi, is one of several initiatives the social media giant is trialling in its bid to bring internet connectivity to every person on the planet. Mark Zuckerberg said the company’s motivation was lifting people out of poverty:
“If you’re talking about 4 billion people who are not on the internet, spreading internet connectivity is clearly one of the biggest things we can do to improve the quality of life for so many people around the world.”
Facebook paying independent video artists up to $24,000 per video
Independent video artists are being snapped up to broadcast on Facebook Live – for hefty wads of cash. The Wall Street Journal has reported Facebook is paying Vine star John Paul Piques US$119,000 to post at least five videos on its live-streaming service over the next two months. That’s the equivalent of US$24,000 per video. And he is just one of about two dozen other internet celebrities and video stars who have signed similar deals.
Snapchat now allows users to recommend accounts to friends
Snapchat has introduced a way to find followers outside your existing network. The ephemeral social platform has launched a ‘recommend’ option which allows users to share accounts with their existing contacts. To give it a try, go into your Stories list, tap and hold on someone’s name and then click on the blue arrow on the right hand side. This allows you to send the account to other people as a private chat message.
Snapchat snaps up Bitmoji
Snapchat has gone public about its purchase of Bitmoji, the app which enables users to create their own cartoon avatars. As both platforms featured ways for users to create bespoke Ghostbuster images, they already have a lot in common. It’s a savvy purchase, which will enable Snapchat to pair up sponsored lenses with Bitmoji’s branded content abilities.
Twitter wants you to know what’s happening
If you’re the kind of person who cries at social media ‘Year In Review’ type videos (we can’t be the only ones, right?!) then get your tissues ready for Twitter’s newest video showing just what is happening on the platform.
— Twitter (@twitter) July 25, 2016
Twitter to have 286m active users by the end of the year
Twitter continues to grow at a steady pace. eMarketer estimates that worldwide, user growth of 10.9% this year will bring Twitter’s monthly active population to 286.3 million by the end of this year. That comes on top of 9.8% growth in 2015. The US is home to the most Twitter users, followed by Brazil, Japan and Mexico. Australia continues to fall behind in Twitter uptake.
You – yes YOU – can be now have a ‘verified’ Twitter account
Ever wanted to trick your followers into thinking you are famous? All you need is a little blue (well, actually it’s white) tick. That’s right, the blue (white) tick is now available to every Tom, Dick and Harry on the internet. All you have to do is make sure your account has a verified phone number, email address, bio, profile picture, birthday and website.
Tinder parties now possible via Tinder social
After initially launching a Beta test in Australia, Tinder is now allowing users across the globe the chance to organise group get togethers with a bunch of your existing friends and a group of, er, ‘new’ friends. The app will allow you to create a group using your Facebook connections and then look for other groups of the opposite sex via Tinder. If you were one of the lucky people to take part in the Beta, then you’ll know that it works really well if being invited to hotel rooms at 9:30 on a Tuesday morning is your idea of a fun date with friends…
Exclusive specs on offer for Snapchat users
Spectacle company Warby Parker is offering its very first Snapchat-exclusive product — limited edition sunglasses only available for purchase to its Snapchat followers. The US retailer shared a Snapchat story with its followers with a unique URL where, for a limited time, they could buy “head-turning Haskell in Crystal, now with new silver mirrored lenses” for $95. What an incentive.
Identity crisis? There’s a candy chatbot for that
Candy brand Trolli is launching a Facebook Messenger chatbot that it hopes will open up a new way to talk to sweet-toothed millennials in the US. The bot uses a 10-question quiz to match up consumers with one of three ‘personalities’ based on flavours of candy – Egg, Crawler and Blast. Each personality serves up different pieces of content. Crawler, for example, asks consumers to care for a virtual crawler – similar to a Tamagotchi. The Blast, meanwhile, sends users a ‘daily blast of weird’. None of them seem to send you free sweets though. Maybe that will be in the next update.