Instagram For Android Updated To Add Support For Nexus 7 And Flickr Sharing; Twitter For BB Updated To v3.1

To get to that magical $199 price on the Nexus 7, Google and Asus had to make a lot of compromises including ditching a back camera on the tablet. Considering not many people use their tablet to click pictures, this definitely is a wise move. However, the lack of a back camera on the Nexus 7 also means that all apps on the Android Market that rely on a camera, including Instagram, give a “Device Not Supported” error.

Today, the Instagram developers have released a new update for the Android version of the app that adds support for the Nexus 7, along with the ability to share their images to Flickr. Nexus 7 users can now use the 1.3MP front-facing camera on their tablet to click pictures using Instagram.

 In some other app related update news, Twitter for BlackBerry also got a major update to v3.1. The new update brings with it an improved tweet details screen including the ability to see who retweeted your tweet, the ability to undo your RTs, and support for three new languages. The update is already available in the BlackBerry App World for users to download.

Facebook For Android Updated; Twitter For Nokia S40 Launched

Facebook has recently released a new update for its official Android app. The latest update allows you to take photos using the front-facing camera and share it with your Facebook friends. Apart from that, it comes with the new messaging features which lets you switch between conversations, share bigger photos and see friends who are online. This update is available only for devices running Android 2.2 (Froyo) and up. It bumps the Facebook for Android to version 1.9.7. Check out the complete changelog below.

What’s in this version:

  • Facebook for Android 1.9.7 requires Android 2.2 and up
  • A front-facing camera makes it easier to take photos
  • New messaging features let you switch between conversations, include friends of friends, share bigger photos, and see who’s available
  • Various bug fixes
  • Made a security improvement
  • Faster app login and navigation

[ Download Facebook for Android ]

Twitter for Nokia S40:

The official Twitter app is already available for Nokia smartphones running on Symbian and Windows Phone 7.5 OS. However, the owners of Nokia feature phone running on Symbian Series 40 had to visit the Twitter mobile site to update their status and access their timeline. Now, Twitter has finally launched the official app for Series 40 feature phones.

The new Twitter for Nokia S40 app brings most of the features that are currently available on Twitter’s smartphone app. It allows you to post your own tweets and follow others tweets. Apart from that, there are @Connect and #Discover features which lets you see your mentions and browse the most interesting Tweets from around the world.

[ Download Twitter for Nokia S40 ]

Twitter Age Screening Tool to Restrict Minors from Following Adult Bands

In partnership with Twitter, the social media analytics firm Buddy Media has released an age screening tool, specially designed for alcohol brands and marketers who want to restrict minors from viewing age-restricted content.

Such brands can make use of this age screening tool to restrict under-aged users from either following the brand, or reading any tweets. That way, it enables the advertisers and others to hide inappropriate content from minors.

When you follow a brand that is taking part in the age screening service, you will receive an automated Direct Message from that brand with a link to verify your age. After having your age verified, you can continue reading the tweets from that account, otherwise, you will be restricted.

However, there is no verification or any background check done to see if you have provided the right information. Just like every other age verification system, it entirely depends on the users’ honesty. That being said, if the brand finds out that the entered age is incorrect, which is done to bypass their age screen, the brand can completely block you and also permanently ban you from following the account in future.

Twitter Age Screening

Once you have entered your age, the system will not ask for it again. Also, Twitter continues to comply with its policy of not storing any user information. The age information that you provide will be confidentially stored by Buddy Media, who is limited to using your information exclusively for this purpose only. This also means that Buddy Media is not entitled to share the information with any advertisers.

You can go ahead and try following the below mentioned brands on Twitter, who have tested and implemented the age screening tool.

Buddy Media explained in a blog post on its site:

Over the past month, we have been beta-testing this solution with a small and select group of alcohol brands from several of the alcohol industry’s major holding companies, including Brown Forman’s Jack Daniels (@JackHoney), Jim Beam’s Skinny Girl (@SkinnygirlCKTLS), and MillerCoors’ Coors Light and Miller Lite (@CoorsLite and @MillerLite). Now, we are formally launching this solution and making it available to any marketer.

If you’re a brand who would like to use the age screening tool, you can sign up here and submit your brand for approval. Buddy Media will provide you with access to the Twitter Age Screening tool once approved.

Twitter For Android And iPhone Updated; Brings Expanded View, Custom Push Notifications

Twitter has just started rolling out a much needed update for the official Twitter app for Android and iPhone. The latest update comes with expanded tweets, push notification for tweets, improvements to search auto-complete, performance improvements, tappable avatars and much more. This update bumps the Twitter for Android to v3.3 and Twitter for iPhone to v4.3.

Earlier, receiving tweets from your favorite users was possible only via SMS. However, the new push notification feature allows you to get notifications from people whom you follow whenever they send a new tweet or re-tweet. You can easily turn on push notifications for tweets for any user via the action button on their profile. This update also brings the expanded tweets feature which allows you to view the image preview or play videos without leaving the app.

The latest version of Twitter app also brings major improvements in search autocomplete which lets you see more suggestions when you are searching for people. Apart from that, you can now visit any user profile just by tapping the avatar. Check out the complete changelog after the break.

Changelog:

Twitter for Android v3.3

  • Expanded Tweets: when you view Tweet details containing links to partner sites, you can now see content previews, view images, play videos and more
  • Push notifications for Tweets: choose to receive notifications from people you follow anytime they tweet or retweet
  • Improvements to search autocomplete for users
  • Tappable avatars that take you directly to user profiles
  • Many other tweaks, polish, and bug and crasher fixes

Twitter for iPhone v4.3

  • Expanded Tweets: when you view Tweet details containing links to partner websites, you can now see content previews, view images, play videos and more
  • Enhanced experience around selected events with the best Tweets and photos from those involved
  • Push notifications for Tweets: choose to receive notifications from people you follow anytime they tweet or retweet
  • Ambient notifications: enables you to see brief non-interruptive notifications in the status bar while you are using the app
  • Improvements to search autocomplete for users
  • Discover: now indicates when new stories are available for you to view
  • Tappable avatars that take you directly to user profiles
  • Performance improvements
  • Support for password entry in app when experiencing authentication issues
  • Hungarian language support
  • Updated with new Twitter bird
  • Many other tweaks, polish, and bug and crasher fixes

[ Download Twitter for Android ]

[ Download Twitter for iPhone ]

Facebook, Twitter Feeds Escalate Anxiety

Facebook, Twitter Feeds Cause Anxiety Among People

Over the years, technology has been a critical component for the betterment of human life. However, everything is not as green as you might think. When we talk about the more recent evolution in technology, everyone would chatter about online media. Yes!  We are talking about social media, something which has entered into the lives of millions by storm. It has affected the way people live, the way people behave, the way people connect and the way people socialize. All in all, it has made people more dependent on it on an everyday basis. This massive dependency is extremely counterproductive, says a study conducted at Salford Business School in the UK. The odds are that you have a Facebook account and/or a Twitter account which acts as your daily dose of information. How do you feel at a personal level after spending significant everyday logged on to either Facebook or Twitter? Experts are Salford Business School reveals that Facebook and Twitter feeds cause anxiety among people and makes them feel insecure. Further findings indicated that people admitted the fact that they feel worse about their lives. The people surveyed also indicated that their confidence level dropped after seeing the accomplishments of their peers.

Interestingly, two-thirds of the sample admit that they do not get proper sleep after visiting these sites whereas a quarter of them state that these sits have cut into their personal interactions either at work or in their relationship. It is not only limited to that. The survey pattern showed that 55% of the people felt “worried” when they were not able to log onto their Facebook or email accounts. To get some mental rest, 60% of the people are compelled to turn off gadgets.

These stats are testimony to the fact that where social media has helped achieve wonders such as a democratic sphere where every individual has an equal say, it has also become an arena where people are deviating from the physically connected world to a virtual one. It affects the feelings of people and their sentiments in a negative way, alienating them from people while staying connected. Such studies are more consistent nowadays. It is important that these consequences are not overlooked.

Twitter for Windows Phone Gets Updated: Notifications, Finally!

Twitter for Windows Phone is one of those apps  that was available at launch, but it has seen very few updates over the past 2 years. The most important feature that was missing was notifications. In the latest update, the app finally received the ability to receive notifications.

Not only are notifications well implemented (they use a push notifications server vs. generic background agents), they are fast. Very fast. I see toasts almost instantaneously. The “other fixes” in this update seem to have made the app generally faster to refresh tweets, a common problem with all twitter clients on Windows Phone. If the app receives the ability to reply all on tweets, this may become my go-to twitter client on Windows Phone. That is huge, considering I had actually uninstalled the app from my phone because I had zero hope of it getting any meaningful updates!

Here are some screenshots of the settings added in this update, related to notifications. I also noticed they have added the ability to pin lists to the Start Screen and manage list membership, which I am not sure was possible before this update.

 

Twitter for Windows Phone Notifications Settings Screen

Twitter for Windows Phone Notifications Settings Screen

 

Twitter for Windows Phone Notifications Settings For Mentions

Twitter for Windows Phone Notifications Settings For Mentions

Twitter for Windows Phone Notifications Settings For Favorites

Twitter for Windows Phone Notifications Settings For Favorites

Twitter for Windows Phone Notifications Settings For Retweets

Twitter for Windows Phone Notifications Settings For Retweets

 

Twitter for Windows Phone Toast Notification

Twitter for Windows Phone Toast Notification

Twitter for Windows Phone - Pinning Lists to Start Screen

Twitter for Windows Phone – Pinning Lists to Start Screen

Twitter for Windows Phone - Manage List Membership

Twitter for Windows Phone – Manage List Membership

Don’t get me wrong. The app is not complete. Besides the reply-all feature that I mentioned above, there are some other features in apps like Rowi, Carbon and Mehdoh that I like to see in a twitter client, least of which is Tweet Marker support so read status of tweets is sync-ed across multiple apps and platforms. Regardless, I am now not ashamed to recommend Twitter for Windows Phone as a twitter client for the platform.

LinkedIn Breaks Up with Twitter; Will No Longer Sync Twitter Updates

You will no longer be able to post your Twitter updates to LinkedIn, as the latter has made an announcement stating that, regardless of whether you push all your Twitter updates to LinkedIn, or simply filter them out with the #in hashtag, they will no longer be displayed on LinkedIn.

Here’s the update that was sent out LinkedIn users who took advantage of the Twitter-to-LinkedIn service:

LinkedIn and Twitter have worked together since 2009 to enable you to share your professional conversations on both
platforms. Twitter recently evolved its strategy and this will result in a change to the way Tweets appear in third-party applications. Starting today Tweets will no longer be displayed on LinkedIn.

We know that sharing updates from LinkedIn to Twitter is a valuable service for our members. Moving forward, you will still be able to share updates with your Twitter audience by posting them on LinkedIn.

However, you can continue posting updates through LinkedIn to Twitter via the “Share” button. After you compose your post, check the box with the Twitter icon, and click on “Share.” You post will be automatically published to both your LinkedIn connections and your Twitter followers.

Why This Change?
Twitter Birdhouse

Prior to the announcement by LinkedIn, Twitter’s Michael Sippey posted a change about Twitter’s policy indicating that the company is looking forward to “build engaging experiences into Twitter” and allow “developers to be able to build applications that run within Tweets.”

All it means to say is that Twitter wants it users to stick around its own website and mobile applications, and has been focusing a lot to achieve that. In other words, Twitter is trying to push out third-party partners who display tweets on their websites. This change in Twitter’s policy is because the company is expecting to boost its revenue from advertising, and according to some sources, it is expecting to generate over $1 billion revenue in advertising by 2014.

Twitter advertising business accounts to almost 90 percent of its revenue. And in order to achieve the $1 billion milestone, Twitter needs to grow its advertising business, no matter what. In 2011, Twitter managed to generate nearly $140 million in advertising revenue.

MetroTwit, Another Twitter App for Windows 8

MetroTwit is a popular Twitter client for Windows inspired by the Metro design language. A preview of the app, designed from the ground up for Windows 8, is now available on the Windows Store. The app has been developed by Pixel Pixel Tucker Pty Ltd, an endeavour by Long Zheng, David Golden, and Winston Pang.

The Metro app allows you to track your Twitter feeds with interactive tiles and a multi-column layout. The app uses nifty features of Windows 8 Metro apps for a great user experience. It allows you pin multiple columns on the homescreen and provides a Snap view for quick access to tweets. The tweet options and action buttons are available in the application bar allowing maximum screen estate for the Twitter feeds. MetroTwit is one of the few applications with built-in support for edge scrolling, triggered by the mouse when it reaches a vertical screen edge

The app is developed from ground up since a port of the existing WPF app wouldn’t have been possible. Also, according to Long, it is designed for both mouse and touch from the start, a deviation from the existing Windows developer mindset.

The app scores well in terms of usability, and fits the bill for the needs of both casual and power users of Twitter. Apart from MetroTwit, Windows Store features two other Twitter apps – Rowi and Tweetro.

Facebook, Google & Twitter Unify To Combat “Spam”

In the digital world, people are consuming media in a totally new fashion. New patterns emerge where substantial data is gathered to analyze media consumption. The results obtained from such data serve as a tool to understand what type of content people consume, like and share. In order to keep providing content as such, it is imperative to provide exceptional user experience. Companies have understood this and aim to not only maintain the rate of media consumption but increment for increased traffic, revenues and most importantly, a larger volume of consumers. Media companies are constantly challenged to come up with innovative methods to capture the eye-balls of media consumers and are investing heavily in research to understand the essential ingredients that make up an exceptional user experience. To add to the challenge, companies have been battling spam and malicious advertising which has been a major obstacle to this feat. This time around, big names such as Facebook, Google, Twitter, AOL and IAB have joined hands to combat spam once and for all.

Facebook, Google, Twitter Combine Forces

Captioned under the Ads Integrity Alliance, the initiative was launched a week ago under the StopBadWare organization. The objective is to mitigate malicious ads and contribute to better practices, better service. According to Maxim Weinstein, the Executive Director of the organization, no single player can attempt to fight this cause of its own which is why they are unifying the big players in the industry to fight this problem together.

Google’s Public Policy Manager, Eric Davis affirmed that the Ads Integrity Alliance will serve as a platform where companies can work together to protect users from malicious ads. He further added if the user feels deceived, the entire web’s reputation is on stake.

Twitter Down; Suffering Massive Outage

It looks like has gone down and it is far more serious than the fail whale we are used to seeing. The website itself is not inaccessible and it looks like it has suffered some kind of massive outage.

Twitter Down

Right now there is no update on the status blog too. We have reached out to Twitter to find out what has caused the outage.

Update #1: Twitter posted  a message on their status blog confirming the downtime

Users may be experiencing issues accessing Twitter. Our engineers are currently working to resolve the issue.

Update #2: has started displaying messages to users on Twitter being inaccessible for several users as well

google_chrome_twitter_down

Update #3: Looks like Twitter is back up

Update #4: And it appears like another Twitter outage

Stay tuned for further updates….