The popular blogging platform – Tumblr, was recently acquired by search engine giant Yahoo! After days of speculations about the possible sale of Tumblr, Marissa Mayer – CEO of Yahoo confirmed the news via her Twitter account. Around the same time, founder and CEO of Tumblr – David Karp also confirmed the news of the acquisition. Yahoo paid a whopping $1.1 billion to acquire Yahoo and the entire amount was paid in cash.
The Google I/O is an eagerly awaited even every year and is a Mecca for techies and geeks. This year attendees were not disappointed as Google announced the launch of a host of new applications, features and changes to existing Google products and services. Perhaps the most important launch at the event was that of the new Google+. Google’s social networking website has been redesigned and is packed with new features. Google+ users were welcomed by the revamped Google+ on Wednesday.
Facebook appears to be adding new changes to the news feed and timeline frequently to be able to give users the best possible user experience. It is obvious that visual content is more interesting and eye-catching than plain textual content and the social networking giant is making a push towards improving the prominence of pictures in news feeds and timelines of users. Facebook is testing two link formats – both of which are geared towards increasing the prominence of the images associated with links.
Just a few days ago, Twitter launched its standalone music app – Twitter Music. Although the app is not yet functional, the micro-blogging platform has just inked deals with entertainment giant BBC America to publish exclusive video content from the media company on Twitter. These videos will be of popular series on BBC America and all the videos will be “first-in Tweet branded”. The news of this Twitter and BBC America partnership was announced by BBC America via a tweet on its official Twitter account.
After acquiring the music service We Are Hunted, Twitter is looking to launch its own standalone music app for its users. So far, users have been able to open the page music.twitter.com and have been able to see the Twitter logo, a #music hashtag, a sign in button and a message that says that the app will be released soon. On clicking the sign in button, users are taken to an authorization page but signing in to this app still hasn’t been enabled as users are met with a server error when they try to sign in.
Flipboard is an extremely popular app for tablets that allows users to view content by flipping through it like they would to read a magazine. Flipboard presents tablet-friendly content to users in an attractive manner and people love it so much that this application was able to attract close to 50 million users in a very short span of time.
Along with Instagram, Flickr is one of the most popular image sharing platforms with millions of active users. In an effort to stave off stiff competition from Instagram and Pinterest, Flickr has released a new update for its iOS app that adds hashtag support to the mobile version of Flickr. The hashtag feature will make it easier to categorize images and pick out popular trends. This new feature could improve the user experience of Flickr and could expand the user base of this photo sharing platform.
Twitter is now looking to expand its ad revenues with the launch of its highly anticipated Ads API. This API now lets advertisers create rich and visually appealing ads that can be uploaded easily on Twitter. Facebook is seen as the friendlier social media platform for advertisers as it offers various tools and features to marketers and advertisers. Looking at the success Facebook has tasted by being friendlier towards advertisers, Twitter aims to recreate similar successes with its latest Ads API. This advertising platform was launched on 20th February, 2013 and has received enthusiastic response from online marketing experts.
Now that Twitter has blocked Instagram images from being expanded and viewed on Twitter, Facebook has decided to continue the animosity between the two social networking giants. In its latest move, Facebook has decided to completely block Twitter’s Vine application from Facebook just a few days after the launch of Vine. Vine is a mobile app that allows people to take small looping videos from their smartphones and share them on the Internet. This means that users will not be able to share Vine videos on Facebook – and this could be a huge blow for the success of Vine.
The Facebook Open Graph has allowed developers to create numerous types of applications based on all the core Facebook activities, but these applications are generating so much data that Facebook is unable to stream them in newsfeeds. To allow users to get all the information related to them and the applications they are using on their news feeds, Facebook appears to be changing the design of the newsfeed. With the new newsfeed design, Facebook is looking to stuff as much data as possible into the newsfeeds so that users do not miss out on any Open Graph information.
It seems like Twitter – the second largest social networking website, is poised to become some sort of an online shopping platform. On February 11th, Twitter announced its partnership with American Express to release a payment-by-tweet feature. Twitter believes that by becoming an e-commerce website, it will be able to attract more advertising revenues in the future.
When the Timeline was released to replace the old Facebook profile design, there was enormous backlash from Facebook users. Now that people seem to be settling in with Timeline and giving positive feedback to the Timeline design, reports suggest that Facebook will be changing Timeline sometime soon. The original Timeline displayed posts and Milestones in two columns. Some users complained that this design forced them to look back and forth to see all the posts.
Twitter has just launched three updated features that are focused on content discovery via mobile devices. These updates ensure that mobile users will find one single stream of content in each tab, making it easier to find and engage with content on Twitter. Twitter officially announced these changes to mobile.twitter.com and other changes to Android and iOS apps on their blog on 6th February, 2013. The updated tabs are called Search, Connect and Discover. So now, users logging into Twitter via their mobile devices will be able to search and view more information easily and quickly from all of these tabs.
Online marketing – especially content and social media marketing – has been seeing tremendous growth in the last few years. Businesses are finally giving social media and content marketing the due respect they deserve and are incorporating it in their overall marketing strategies. Online marketing is no longer a one time activity done on the fly! More and more companies are joining the online marketing bandwagon because they have seen how successful and cost effective it can be. 2012 was the year of content marketing when surveys showed that a large number of companies were expanding their content marketing budgets and creating and publishing more content online.
Facebook is the largest social network in the world with over a billion active users and Google has monopolized the search engine world with over 67% of the market share. It comes as no surprise that these two companies do not talk of each other in glowing terms. The rivalry between these two companies began when Facebook decided to form a close partnership with Google’s competitor – Microsoft, with Microsoft having a 1.6% stake in Facebook. Till last year, the acrimonious relationship between Facebook and Google was only speculated upon by Internet users and fuelled by social media reporters as both sides decided to remain quiet on the issue.
The end of Microsoft’s reign over the PC operating system world seems to be approaching sooner than we thought. Although free operating systems like Linux have become extremely popular, they are hardly a serious threat to Microsoft’s Windows platform as Linux and other Unix-based platforms are mainly used by advanced PC users who have considerable programming knowledge. But Chrome OS is a different story.
Facebook has just launched what Mark Zuckerberg has christened “the third pillar” of the Facebook experience – the Graph Search. Is this Facebook’s answer to Google’s Knowledge Graph? The Graph Search is still in the Beta phase but it is a tool that helps navigate the Facebook Graph. The Facebook Graph is the name given to the tools that allow people to map their relationships with other Facebook users and their interests. As Facebook has over a billion users, this is a huge addition to Facebook. Along with the News Feed and the Facebook Timeline, the Graph Search will help define user experience with Facebook.
The United States Federal Trade Commission or FTC decided to drop its plans of slapping Google with an antitrust lawsuit in the beginning of this month. Google is wasting no time and is taking this as a green signal to aggressively pursue the development of Google 2.0. Google 2.0 will transform the Google search engine into an answer engine being able to answer users’ questions instead of just returning results that match the typed keywords.
Facebook users have come to expect changes in the social networking site whether they like it or not. Even though Facebook has received immense backlash for most of their changes, they continue to tweak the website to enhance the user experience of the website. Most of us have barely gotten used to the Facebook Timeline, but be prepared to encounter further changes to the Timeline.
This comes as no surprise that Instagram has angered many of its users with the new Terms of Service. One Instagram user has decided to take legal action against the photo-sharing platform over its new terms of service. Lucy Funes has filed a class action lawsuit in the San Francisco federal court, against the photo-sharing service, last week. This California resident has accused the website, among other things, of breach of contract and claims that she is acting on behalf of other Instagram users and herself.
Just when Twitter users were dealing with the news that Instagram was pulling out, Pinterest’s recent announcement is bound to bring some cheer. Instagram users may not be able to share their images on Twitter again but they can start using Pinterest instead. The pinboard-based photo sharing service recently added support for Twitter cards. This will allow people to see Pinterest images in the Twitter feed itself. They will not have to leave Twitter and follow the link to Pinterest to view the images.
Just when Instagram started becoming an essential tool for online and social media marketers, the enforcement of new policies could see it vanish into obscurity. As many social media experts are calling it, the new policies that come into effect from 16th January, 2013, could be Instagram’s “suicide note”. These terms and policies indicate that the business model of Instagram is changing. It is now making users the product instead of the service.
It’s no surprise that Google is closing in on 70% of all searches conducted in America. Last month, reports indicated that Google had broken its previous record and had managed to capture more than 66.9% of all US searches. This December, the numbers have moved up by 0.1%, which now means that 67% of all searches conducted in the US were via Google. Most experts agree that in no time the market share captured by the search engine will reach 70%.
Facebook has been trying to capture the image-sharing market in the social networking world and as a result, recently bought Instagram. As a clear indication of the social network war going on between Facebook, Instagram and Twitter; Instagram has stopped allowing its pictures to be displayed in Twitter timelines. Kevin Systrom – co-founder of Instagram, announced in the first week of December that his company will be dropping support for Twitter cards completely in some time. This change means that Instagram photos will not be displayed in Tweets or photo galleries of users.
Google's tremendous advertising revenues have left a bitter taste in the mouths of its competitors. The strong hold that it has on the Internet may have inspired various dictionary publications to legitimize the word “google” as a verb but this monopoly that the search engine giant enjoys is not only worrying but angering other companies.
In the hopes of becoming the number one search engine in developing countries, Google is slowly launching its service across various countries allowing people to access its web pages even with low bandwidths. Developing countries like the Philippines, Brazil, India, etc. have huge populations with most of the people being very tech savvy. However, these countries lack advanced network infrastructures, limiting the internet bandwidths available to the masses. Google just launched a service known as Free Zone that allows people to access the Web, including Google Ads, from basic hand-held devices. This service aims to capture the burgeoning market in these developing countries amounting to billions of people.
Google has redesigned the search results page and officially announced this change on their blog earlier today. After extensive changes to its website ranking algorithms, which changed the search results, this new change transforms the way these results are displayed. The new design has only been rolled out to the U.S. version of the website and the search giant is planning on releasing this new design to all its localized web pages in a few months.
© 2013 Godot Media