Apple’s iOS 11 will take Facebook and Twitter down a notch

Whether you realized it or not, Facebook and Twitter have long had a special place in the iOS ecosystem. ;

That, dear readers, is about to change. ;

SEE ALSO: Everything you need to know about macOS High Sierra

According to Axios, Apple will do away with the ability to directly sign into the two social media platforms from iOS in the forthcoming iOS 11. ;

End of an era

— Sean Cook (@theSeanCook) June 5, 2017

What does this mean? Currently, iOS apps can access the identities of connected Twitter and Facebook accounts if the user has signed into those accounts via the phone’s Settings’ section. This makes using some other apps a more seamless experience, as users don’t have to manually log into Facebook or Twitter on each and every app that relies upon access to those accounts. ; Read more…

More about Facebook, Twitter, Apple, Ios 11, and Tech

Snapchat’s constant evolution shows it won’t let itself be crushed by Facebook

Limitless snaps? Looping snaps?! ;

SEE ALSO: Snapchat’s finally offering more location data to advertisers

Snapchat changed the game Tuesday with several new product features that had some diehard users cringing. Snap has shown a willingness to change often and radically, but the most recent changes show that even the most sacred cows can be slaughtered.

Limitless snaps mean you can send a snap for someone to view in your story or in a chat until an indefinite period of time — or well, until they tap away. Looping snaps let you set a snap on a loop, that, again, continues until you tap. The update also introduces emoji drawing (it sounds like what it is), and a “magic eraser” that allows you to make objects disappear from snaps. Read more…

More about Business, Facebook, Snapchat, Earnings, and Apps And Software

The line between Instagram and Facebook is getting very, very thin—and here’s why you should care

An algorithmic feed. Live video. A seemingly unquenchable thirst to copy Snapchat. Sound like an app you know? You’d be forgiven for thinking the answer was Facebook, though, it’s not. ;

Instagram’s the app you’re looking for, and it’s been steadily moving closer to Facebook (which owns Instagram) in recent months. ;

And on Tuesday, the company took the next step in that direction, and announced it was adding the ability to “like” comments within posts. ;

While Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom billed it as a way to “encourage positivity” on the platform, for many, the move’s just the latest in a series of ways Instagram is more and more often resembling Facebook. Read more…

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Facebook Messenger Lite is here for slow connections and older Androids

Facebook has had a “lite” version of its main app since 2015, giving users with slower phones and poor internet connections a decent way to access the social network. Now, the company has also launched Facebook Messenger Lite for Android, a slimmed-down version of its standalone Messenger app. ;

In a blog post Monday, Facebook said the app “offers the core features of Messenger for markets with slower-than-average internet speeds ;and a prevalence of basic Android smartphones.”

SEE ALSO: How Facebook’s last year shows dominance in mobile advertising — and what’s next

The app is less than 10MB in size, and includes core Messenger functions such as sending and receiving text messages, photos and links, as well as receiving stickers. Just like the Facebook Lite app, the Facebook Messenger Lite’s icon has the colors reversed: It’s blue on white instead of white on blue. ; Read more…

More about Messenger Lite, Facebook, Tech, and Apps Software

A Hillary Clinton super PAC is using Facebook’s most advanced advertising to go after Donald Trump

By Thursday, September 8, 2016 0 Permalink 0

One of Hillary Clinton’s biggest spenders is going beyond television and tapping into Facebook’s most advanced ad units in its effort to explain to young voters what a Donald Trump administration could mean for them. ;

Priorities USA Action, the main super PAC supporting Democratic nominee Clinton, will begin a campaign on Thursday displaying a four-part comic book series called “Trump’s America.” The first will run for two weeks with the following parts running for a week each up until the first week of October. ;

Unlike the traditional television and video attack ads that the super PAC has been running, the group chose to invest in the other creative ad units on the world’s largest social network. ; Read more…

More about Facebook, Advertising, Election 2016, Donald Trump, and Priorities Usa Action

Facebook really is keeping tabs on your political views

Facebook claims to know your political biases — and it’s generating ads to exploit them.

The social network rolled out a new “ad preferences” page earlier this month, allowing users to understand more about how the company markets to them based on interests like “video games,” “Airbnb” and the curiously labeled “human skin color.” As The New York Times reported Tuesday, those interests also include political leanings and how likely a user is “to engage in politics.”

SEE ALSO: First look at Facebook’s massive new R&D lab

If you want to see where you fall according to Facebook, log into the social network on a computer, visit the ad preferences page, then click “Lifestyle and Culture.” Your political views should be included there, depending on how much Facebook knows about you. ; Read more…

More about Facebook App, Social Media, Media, Facebook, and Tech

Facebook Adding Sports Section to Flagship App’s Menu?

By Wednesday, February 24, 2016 0 Permalink 0

Facebook appears to be experimenting with adding the secondary categories for mobile News Feed that surfaced late last year to its flagship application’s menu bar.

Some iOS users (including this writer) are seeing a new sports section in the menu bar of their flagship Facebook apps, enabling them to customize their favorite teams from the National Basketball Association, Major League Baseball, the National Hockey League, the National Football League and college football, and adding features such as scoreboards and Facebook Sports Stadium-type pages for specific games.

Users: Are you seeing a sports category in the menu bar of your Facebook apps?

Thank you to Matteo Gamba for the tip.

Deleting the Facebook App Could Save 15% of Your iPhone’s Battery

By Monday, February 8, 2016 0 Permalink 0

If you’re an iPhone-owning Facebook user who never seems to have enough battery life, there’s now more reason to believe the Facebook app could be part of the problem.

The Guardian recently tested an iPhone 6s Plus for one week without the main Facebook app installed, and instead accessed Facebook using the mobile site through Safari. The phone’s battery life was recorded at 10:30 p.m. each day.

The phone was allowed to charge overnight, and was taken off of the charger at 7:30 a.m. each morning. Other than removing the Facebook app, the phone was reportedly used as normal.

The test showed the device, on average, had 15 percent more battery left at 10:30 p.m. each day without the Facebook app installed. To confirm the test’s results, other iPhone users were asked to perform a similar test, and had similar results.

Facebook has long been blamed for battery issues. Last year, the app made waves as users found the app was running in the background and draining their battery life, even with Background App Refresh turned off. In October 2015, the company released a fix for its iOS app, which eliminated two bugs reportedly responsible for battery-draining issues.

Readers: Have you experienced battery life issues because of the Facebook app?

Facebook To Pull Plug on Parse

Parse, the cloud application platform acquired by Facebook in April 2013, will cease to exist Jan. 28, 2017.

Parse co-founder Kevin Lacker made the announcement in a blog post, also revealing two tools to help developers migrate their apps to other platforms.

Lacker wrote:

We have a difficult announcement to make. Beginning today, we’re winding down the Parse service, and Parse will be fully retired after a year-long period ending Jan. 28, 2017. We’re proud that we’ve been able to help so many of you build great mobile apps, but we need to focus our resources elsewhere.

We understand that this won’t be an easy transition, and we’re working hard to make this process as easy as possible. We are committed to maintaining the back-end service during the sunset period, and we are providing several tools to help migrate applications to other services.

First, we’re releasing a database migration tool that lets you migrate data from your Parse app to any MongoDB database. During this migration, the Parse application-programming interface will continue to operate as usual based on your new database, so this can happen without downtime. Second, we’re releasing the open source Parse Server, which lets you run most of the Parse API from your own Node.js server. Once you have your data in your own database, Parse Server lets you keep your application running without major changes in the client-side code. For more details, check out our migration guide here.

We know that many of you have come to rely on Parse, and we are striving to make this transition as straightforward as possible. We enjoyed working with each of you, and we have deep admiration for the things you’ve built. Thank you for using Parse.

Facebook spokesman Michael Kirkland told The New York Times’ Bits blog:

Moving forward, we want to dedicate more resources to high-impact products and services in areas like analytics, monetization, discovery and authentication. As a result, we’ve made the difficult decision to wind down support for Parse. We’re proud of what we’ve accomplished together with the Parse community, and we thank them for their support.

Readers: Are you as surprised as we were?