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Twitter Makes Changes to Direct Messaging

messagingIn a recent move, Twitter released an update for their direct messaging application. The new changes to this particular feature of the website include adding typing indicators, read receipts, and also content previews beneath links that are sent over this messaging program. Many of these changes are ones that put this messaging program on a similar level to others used by different social media sites.

 

As part of the new changes to their direct messaging, Twitter has implemented read receipts. These make it so that users are able to see when the person who receives the message has looked at it. In addition to this, Twitter also has added typing indicators which are small boxes that pop up to let you know when the other person is typing. This can help you to avoid typing at the same time. These different features are all part of Facebook messaging already so there is nothing especially innovative about them.

 

Many people don’t really like having it so that the other person can tell if they have read a message. Luckily, Twitter has a solution for this. Users that don’t want to have read receipts sent to other users they are talking to can turn off this feature in the settings of the Twitter application. If they turn off read receipts, they will then be unable to see when people have read their messages in addition to other people not being able to see when they have read theirs’.

 

Twitter is continuing to add different features as they are struggling to compete with different social media sites. Many users are complaining that while Twitter continues to add updates, these are not the updates that Twitter users have been asking for. One update that Twitter users would like to see is a lift on the limit of how many direct messages can be sent in one day. For now, it looks like Twitter isn’t interested in making these user requested changes.

Twitter Adds a New Night Mode That is Easier On the Eyes

phone at nightAfter several smaller applications have released versions of their apps that are better for those using them at night, Twitter has decided to also jump on board with a new night mode. Their night mode features a darker color scheme perfect for using during the night. While the update was initially only available to Android users, it has been extended to iOS as well.

 

The purpose of this new mode is to help those who use the Twitter application in the night. There have been many studies over the last few years to show that a blaring white phone screen can damage vision and cause the natural sleep rhythms of the body to become confused. As a response to this problem, Twitter has joined other applications in adding a special night mode to their app. This will allow users to switch from their standard display to a darker one that is better for those tweeting in the evening or late at night.

 

For now, Twitter’s night mode has to be toggled on and off by hand, but there are hopes that this will eventually change so that Twitter’s display will change as it gets to a certain time in the evening. In the app on Android and iOS, users will be able to change what mode they are in by changing their Twitter settings. It is easy to access the areas where you can turn the screen from one mode to the other.

 

There is some speculation that this change in Twitter and in other applications may be foreshadowing some of the features of the future iPhone 7. Some wonder if Apple will use this phone as their chance to roll out a new screen that will have the ability to more easily display darker colors without using as much battery life. Of course, for that information, we’ll have to wait for news from Apple.

Twitter Makes Changes for the 2016 Olympics

olympics 2016In light of the 2016 Olympics, Twitter has been working on some new updates that are being made specifically so that users can easily follow the Olympic games and stay on top of the news that matters to them. Much like with the democratic and republican national conventions this will mean having special emoji. Twitter’s goal is to make changes that will improve the overall experience that users have while the Olympics is going on.

 

To start with, Twitter has added some corresponding flag emoji that will go with specific hashtags that Twitter users use while they are tweeting. This means that if people type a hashtag such as #USA then an American flag will be added to the hashtag as well. For the Refugee Olympic Athletes, they will be using a world held in two hands instead. These emoji will help to add a visual aspect to these tweets.

 

So that Twitter users will be able to follow the Olympics much more easily, Twitter is going to be adding a special place under Twitter Moments where users can easily follow along with what is being tweeted about the games. There are different accounts that can be followed in addition to recap moments that will make it easy for users to find medal counts, event results, and other important information. Users will be able to follow moments based on their favorite events and their own country.

 

Twitter owned applications including Periscope will also be on board to make it so that Twitter users are able to follow the Olympics better. Twitter Amplify will be offering many video highlights and Periscope will have an Olympics channel that will cover a wide range of content that will be related to the Olympics as a whole. These will be great places for Twitter users to watch content and get videos from their favorite events and athletes.

 

By adding these different features to Twitter, the social media site is helping to encourage users to engage in the conversation as this world wide event goes on. The different aspects of their updates are meant to make talking about the Olympics easier and more fun to do. Twitter’s obvious goal is to have people talking about the Olympics and going to Twitter to find the information about the Olympics that they are interested in.

Snapchat Makes Changes to Allow It to Compete for Social Media Advertising

snapchatAs Twitter is struggling to find relevancy with today’s users, Snapchat is beginning to dominate the time that people used to spend on other social media sites. Snapchat itself has been growing in popularity since its initial launch to the point where users are averaging 24-30 minutes spent on this particular application each day. With this level of success, it is no wonder that Snapchat is starting to look for ways to profit more from the time users spend on the application.

 

After a recent update where Snapchat made many small changes to the way the stories are displayed on their app and to icons on the app, they announced that a new update was coming as well. This new update is going to make it so that advertisers will be able to easily create ads and submit these to the app without having to talk directly to a Snapchat representative. With a high level of advertising customization, advertisers will be able create a place where users can swipe to go to their site, buy their product, or do anything else that benefits the advertiser. They will even be able to target their advertisements to a range of demographics. This should help to make it so that advertisers are able to more easily submit and customize their advertisements.

 

In addition to just making some changes in the submission process, they announced exactly where these ads would be appearing. The ads will work a lot like the ones on YouTube do where users have to see the ads before watching the videos. In this case, the advertisements will appear between the stories that users view as they are scrolling through their feed looking for updates from friends.

 

Already, Snapchat is starting to see a bit of an adverse reaction to the newly announced advertisements. Many users are worried that the ads will become annoying and intrusive after this initial change to the social media application. For now, Snapchat allows the option of scrolling past these ads, but many users fear that this will change over time. If Snapchat can successfully add a greater number of advertisements into their app, without upsetting their user base, they may have a good chance of taking a lot of the advertising dollars that currently go to Facebook and Twitter.

Twitter Changes Character Limit to Make Tweeting Less Frustrating

tweetingIn its struggle to remain relevant and to make its product more appealing to customers, Twitter has announced changes to its traditional character limit. The Twitter 140 character limit has been something that has aggravated users from the launch of Twitter. Of course, Twitter won’t be doing away with the character limit right away either. Twitter’s main goal right now is to eliminate problems that users have with the character limit and other Twitter functions.

 

One of the main complaints about Twitter over the years has been the way that Twitter makes it hard to address large groups of people. The character count currently takes into account the Twitter handle of the person that you are talking to as part of the 140 characters. With the new changes in place, Twitter will make it so that people can mention as many Twitter handles as they would like without them counting against the character limit. In addition to this change, Twitter is also making it so that the links for videos and pictures don’t count against the Tweet characters. This is something that has caused major frustration among Twitter users since the social media site began allowing pictures and videos.

 

One of the long awaited changes that is also part of Twitter’s new set of changes to be launched is a change to using at symbols at the beginning of a Tweet. It used to be that the @mention could appear only with a period in front of it. This made it so users were having to start their Tweets with a period just so that they could begin with a mention. Twitter is doing away with this which means users won’t have to worry about this pesky punctuation anymore.

 

Twitter’s main reasons for changing their Tweets in this way is to make it so that those who are using Twitter do not have to struggle so much with problems that they have been complaining about since the beginning. They want to allow users more characters that they can use for expressing themselves rather than having characters eaten up by all of the technical aspects of the tweet. It will be interesting to see how this change to the Twitter limit effects the way that people are tweeting.

Twitter Connects Users in a Totally New Way

Twitter followAs Twitter continues to update its site hoping to attract more users, it has announced yet another update. Twitter has decided to add a tab to their Twitter app to make it so that users can find accounts that they may be interested in following. Twitter has had recommendations in the past, but the algorithm used for this was not very sophisticated.

 

Twitter’s new tab is simply called “Connect” which makes it clear what the tab is all about. Users who visit this tab will find a list of different users that they are recommended to follow. Twitter says this part of the app will use information on what people have liked and followed in the past as well as what others in their location have enjoyed to make it so that they are able to find accounts that are actually more relevant to users.

 

The new tab replaces the “find friends” tab that previously existed on the app. The goal of this new tab is to provide better suggestions than the ones that people were getting in the past. In addition to just looking at what you’ve shown interest in, this new algorithm will suggest accounts based on current world events. This will help keep suggestions relevant to the individual user and to the time when a person is looking for new accounts to follow.

 

The new tab also utilizes a cell phone specific source of information to decide what a person might be interested in seeing: their contact list. The algorithm will access the address and phone book in a cell phone to find out who people are interested in connecting with. This will make it so that users are automatically notified if a friend from their phone book joins Twitter or has a Twitter page that they are not yet following. The app lets you know why it suggested different people adding further sophistication to the process of connecting individuals.

 

Twitter has added this change as a part of many other updates that are coming in the next few months. Twitter’s goal is to prevent further drops in their user base, especially after seeing a recent decline in total tweets as well as new user growth. They are hoping to cater to a range of people by making Twitter more functional on many different levels. The new Connect tab is just one way that they envision making the website a lot more attractive to new users and especially those on cell phone platforms.

Twitter Revenue Fails to Meet Expectations

falling stock priceSince the beginning of this year, Twitter has made tons of changes to help increase the amount of users that they have on their website. So far these changes don’t seem to be making too much of a difference when it actually comes to the success of Twitter. While users coming to the site continue to go up in number slowly, their ad revenue has begun to come in far under their expected growth.

 

Stock holders are asking how Twitter plans to fix this problem since they are the ones suffer if the revenue continues to go down in the next quarter. Twitter’s response has been working on changing their ads from static text and photo ads to ones that will feature video instead. These ads can be sold at a higher price and will be more attractive to users especially those viewing Twitter on mobile platforms.

 

The problem with this is that adding video ads will make it so that their standard advertisements will not work as well. All of the video ads will distract away from the traditional sponsored tweets that many businesses have used to advertise in the past. These tweets only feature pictures and text and only show up in the users feed. They don’t have the ability to grab users’ attention as other ads can. Since Twitter added video many businesses have been going away from these ads anyway because of their decreased value comparatively.

 

If the drop in revenue is due at least partially to the decreasing value of this type of an advertisement, the hope will be that the revenue will return as Twitter adds more video elements to its social media network. With the upcoming Thursday night football games and the addition of a great deal of video content there will be more space on Twitter for this type of add. Hopefully, these changes to Twitter will help it drive up revenue in the future.

Twitter to Bring Live NFL Games to Social Media

iePlexus blog 1 4-07-16With all of the recent problems that we have been hearing about Twitter’s social media platform, it came as a huge surprise that the NFL chose them over Facebook, Amazon, Verizon, and Yahoo to host Thursday night football games live. This new deal suggests a huge advantage for Twitter’s live streaming future just when it was looking like Facebook might dominate this specific area of social media. It leaves many people wondering what is next for Twitter.

 

One of the main things that people initially wondered was how Twitter outbid their competitors to secure this deal. The truth is that they didn’t. While Twitter was not the highest bidder, the NFL claims it decided to go with this platform because of its experience with live video.  There are certainly different features such as Twitter’s moments and Periscope that could make the experience more interesting. Facebook would be the only other site to have somewhat similar features and they backed out of the bidding after seeing the advertising agreement that came with the contract.

 

Twitter is hoping that this deal will be a big boost for them because of the popularity of the NFL. Streaming these games on Twitter will be a big benefit for those people who have dropped their cable plans and rely completely on streaming for all of their TV content.  With the new deal in place Twitter would be able to establish a new identity and attract new users.

 

While many are looking at the new deal as a great thing, others are pointing out possible flaws in the plan. Since Twitter has always been a great place for live interaction on a secondary screen during live events, streaming and tweeting on the same device seems like a problem. If Twitter is expecting users to look at the live stream, then how will they interact live on their own Twitter pages? This is a question that Twitter has yet to answer.

 

Others are wondering about the deal itself and whether the games will even be worth what Twitter paid for them. The only thing that the NFL is giving to Twitter is Thursday night games, which notoriously feature the worst matchups out of any of the NFL games. Those fans who want to watch these games are unlikely to be the kind of people who are dropping their cable subscriptions. Some wonder about the value of this type of deal at all and whether the NFL just made this partnership in order to wield a greater influence over Twitter.

Twitter Stickers May Be the Next Change to the Twitter Platform

social mediaOver the ten years that Twitter has been in business, there have been a wide range of changes that have completely transformed the social media site. The latest feature that Twitter is testing is a stickers feature that will allow customers to add cartoon images over the top of pictures before posting them. This new feature is just one more way that Twitter is turning their social media platform into a site with more visual components.

 

This newest feature, if released, would follow several other features that Twitter has released in its attempt to make the Twitter world a bit more visual. Previous features have allowed users to add videos to their tweets and even introduced live streaming. The new feature suggests that Twitter is searching for a way to make standard pictures on Twitter into something that is more exciting. It seems all of the recent changes are focused around the idea of creating a new version of Twitter that will attract a greater number of users.

 

The new stickers feature would introduce a feature previously extended only to celebrities through the secret Twitter Camera app. The feature mirrors ones available on other social media sites such as Facebook which allow customers to add cartoon images over standard pictures.  This would allow users to add cute or funny elements to the different pictures that they posted. While the feature is in the early testing stages, it is likely to become a permanent feature to the social media website.

 

To differentiate this feature from similar ones, Twitter has plans to add a social element. The idea would be to display the way that other users have decorated a popular picture and to suggest pictures for users to decorate. Decorating trending pictures would allow users to share opinions and interact in an entirely new way. Twitter’s unique twist on a standard feature could help to make it more competitive with other social media sites.

Twitter Transfers All Users to Their Algorithmic Feed Automatically

social mediaWhen Twitter recently started testing a new way of organizing the way that users see tweets, they received instant backlash from many Twitter users who were not interested in seeing a change. Many of these people were pleased by Twitter’s early requirement to opt into the new system. They were dismayed to discover when Twitter began slowly shifting all users into the new way of displaying posts.

Twitter was initially requiring customers to opt in with the new way of organizing posts because they were still in the testing phase of this new system. They were working to build a way of displaying posts that were not in reverse chronological order and instead in order of what a user might find most interesting or more important. The idea was to make Twitter more attractive for users who only came on the site infrequently. They would be able to more easily see what important news they had missed, instead of being informed only of the most recent information.

Twitter isn’t the only social media site shifting its formatting from displaying posts chronologically to shifting posts to the most relevant and interesting. In the past, other social media sites have offered different ways of displaying posts. Facebook has had top posts and most recent as options for displaying your news feed for a long time. Instagram has recently announced that they will also be switching.

For those who are annoyed with the new change on Twitter, the good news is that the change is not required. Anyone who wishes to have their feed go back to the chronological display, simply has to change a setting within their account. In most cases, Twitter is notifying users of the switch and giving the option to change their settings right away. This means that those who want the new organization can have it while those who prefer the traditional display can stick with this.