What’s new in Social Media?

Keeping up with all the latest tech and social media updates is not an easy task. Most of the time your devices are updating without you even realizing it. Companies such as Snapchat, Instagram, and Facebook are constantly evolving and stealing each other’s ideas in order to stay on top. Here are the latest updates for these social media platforms:

Snapchat: Snapchat has been under a lot of pressure after finally going public earlier this year. Instagram and Facebook have been on their tail mimicking almost every move Snap has made. Because of this sticky situation, in order to stay relevant Snapchat has made some major updates to their platform.

1. First, Snapchat is now letting you create your own custom Geofilters inside the app. Within the app there is a creative studio that lets you customize the Geofilter with themes, text, stickers, and of course, your Bitmoji. Once the filter is created it can cover the total area of an event or up to an entire block. Prices start at $5.99 and increase with the size of the area and the amount of detail within the filter. Not only has Snapchat made it easy on the users, it made it easy to take your event or party to the next level…..For only $6.

2. Snapchat is also now letting you become a stalker without any of the ramifications. Yes, that’s right. The newly introduced Snap Map lets you see exactly where your Snapchat friends are around the globe in real time. So if you want people to constantly know where you are, or maybe you’re just interested in seeing what your ex-girlfriend has been up to, this update was made for you. If you’re not one of these types of people that’s okay too. The update lets you have the option to be on “Ghost Mode,” meaning your Snapchat friends will not be able to locate you at any time.

3. Snapchat has also released custom stories, which are exactly what they sound like. Custom stories are perfect for trips, events, and parties. Snap lets you decide who is allowed to view the story, as well as who can add to the story. Of course you are able to add your Geofilter or location.

4. You are now able to attach a website or link into your snapchats. When viewing a snap there is now an option to “swipe up” which will take you to Snapchats internal browser. From the internal browser you are able to go to the attached link. What does this mean? Now you can share funny websites or memes with your friends through Snap. Celebrities and businesses are using this to advertise their brands and sell their items.

Instagram: Instagram has also been very busy that last couple months constantly updating and evolving their app. Instagram is on a mission to make Snapchat irrelevant and become the ultimate platform.

1. Instagram has recently introduced a number of added features to live stories. Everyone knows live stories are all the hype nowadays and Insta is making it even easier. User are now able to replay the live stories just in case you missed out on something. Additionally, users are now able to reply and comment on the live videos. In order to avoid cyber bullying, Instagram added a feature that allows users to block or hide any offensive content.

2. Location Stories and Story Links are two other new and interesting features. When posting a story there is now an option to add your location in which people are able to click on and see similar posts that have used that same location. There is also now a way to add a link into your story (though mostly for businesses or bloggers) if your trying to direct your followers to a specific site.

3. Instagram has also added Hashtag Stickers as well as additional Selfie Filters. Like I said before, Instagram is doing all they can to wipe Snapchat off the grid, and these features are their latest attempt.

Facebook: Facebook has added a stories feature to their site, yet they have been relatively disappointing compared to Instagram and Snapchat. As such, Facebook is focusing their attention on evolving other aspects of their site.

1. Facebook has altered a lot of their advertising practices in terms of placement and formatting. They also now offer users the option to pay a fee in order to optimize their post in order to reach the right audience. They will also implement sticker click-bait rules that will apply on the site.

2. Facebook Live is also going through a reboot. You are now able to have private conversations simultaneously while broadcasting a live video. This means if you and a friend are both watching the same Facebook live stream, but are in different locations, you have the option to create a private chat room where you and your friend can hash out their differences.

To keep up with the latest on-goings at FLIRT, be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Images Courtesy of TechCrunch, AdEspresso, and AdEspresso.

Six Start Ups that are Changing the Game in 2017

by in Big Ideas, FLIRTcasting, Get Mobile, What We're Seeing, What We're Thinking About 

We’re living in an age of disruptive business. First, Uber changed the way drive, then AirBnB changed the way we travel. Now, these six start-ups are breaking through in their respective industries with innovative solutions to our everyday needs. From digital pill bottles to self-brewing beer machines, these futuristic inventions are bridging the gap between science fiction and reality.

#1 Dash

Described as a “fit bit for cars” Dash is a tech device that monitors user driving and vehicle health needs. It’s designed to help save money, improve safety, and save time. The product combines a mobile app with a hardware device to provide real-time feedback on driving, vehicle diagnostics, navigation, and trip logs.  Since its trial in 2015, over 250,000 drivers have been using dash in the U.S.

 

#2 MealPal 

If you enjoy eating out at the price of packing a lunch, then MealPal is the app for you. This startup service allows members to order lunches from local restaurants, skip the in-store line, and pay under $5 for each meal. Cross your fingers that this service is provided in your city because you can save up to $600 a year on lunches with a subscription.

 

#3 MiniBrew

Praised by Richard Branson as the “most disruptive startup in the beer space” MiniBrew is the world’s first all-in-one beer brewing machine. Consisting of a digital appliance, a fresh ingredient pack, and a mobile app, MiniBrew allows consumers to design and create a variety of beers from virtually. Whether you’re looking to replicate a flavor you tried once in a bar or discover a new beer that matches your mood, this product is the perfect way to express your inner-hipster.

 

#4 Bump Mark 

Designed to reduce food waste and keep consumers informed, Bump Mark adheres to food packaging and alerts consumers when food is going bad. Once the small sticker product is attached to any container, it reacts to the conditions inside. Consumers will know their food has gone bad if the Bumb Mark begins developing a bumpy texture.

 

#5 Babylon Health 

Babylon Health is eliminating all of the time-wasters and hassles of the healthcare industry. With their mobile app, users can book face-to-face consultations, ask medical questions, conduct health tests, check clinical records, and even monitor health indicators such as pulse and blood pressure. While other healthcare apps simply match users with doctors over the phone, the Babylon Health app utilizes artificial intelligence to make predictions, prevent illness, and provide solutions before symptoms progress.

 

#6 AdhereTech 

Here with the latest in smart technology, AdhereTech has designed a pill bottle that alerts patients to take their medication. AdhereTech recognized the extremely common problem that patients often forget to take their medicine, so they created this simple solution. Although the product itself is small, it’s saving the industry billions of dollars in follow-up care and intervention.

 

Images courtesy of Dash.by, AdhereTech.com, BabylonHealth.com, MealPal.com, DesignbySol.co, and MiniBrew.io

Cannes Lions: The Future of Advertising

As we know, advertising and marketing are continuously evolving. We live in an era in which AI and market research allow companies to learn about customers in a way we never imagined. And every day, brands are changing the way they interact with their customers. To discuss this momentous amount of knowledge and innovation, the […]

The Language of the Internet Has Come of Age

by in Best of the Web, Big Ideas, What We're Seeing, What We're Thinking About 

Learning to code HTML is like learning a new language. It’s riddled with new vocabulary, sentence structures, rules, and exceptions. Even the most proficient programmers need a point of reference every once and a while. That’s why we’re loving this HTML cheat sheet courtesy of digital.com. It lists all HTML tags and includes their definition, attributes and examples of usage.

This resource not only bridges the gap between inexperienced and expert coders, it also confirms the lasting flexibility and ingenuity of HTML as the digital world continues to grow.

From Tom Keller at Digital.com:

The Language of the Internet Has Come of Age

When Tim Berners-Lee famously helped to change the way we live our lives a few decades ago his stellar contribution also included Hypertext Markup Language, or HTML as we all know it as.

HTML has evolved rather than be superseded and consigned to extinction and HTML5 is the latest version that serves as proof of its staying power as a blueprint for how everything comes together on the internet.

cheat sheet that covers the full range of HTML elements and how to use the coding to its full extent is testament to how HTML has managed to come of age and is just as relevant today as it was back in 1991 when it was invented.

Images Courtesy of Digital.com

Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence or ‘AI’ is the future of computing. AI is a broad term for making computers act intelligently via robotics, computer science, machine learning, language processing and much more. AI is not some recent phenomenon, yet it is becoming more and more prevalent in our daily lives. Artificial intelligence really has no boundaries or limits and will be the future of computing and analytics. So basically before you know it cars will be flying, your neighbors will be robots, and machines will take over the world. Just kidding, but its more possible now than ever! Listed below are just a few ways that artificial intelligence will change the way we live.

#1 Predicting Weather 

Predicting Weather: Predicting the weather can be extremely difficult and is often inaccurate. Artificial intelligence software is being created that will be able to evaluate all the available data quickly and then forecast the approaching weather. This software will do much more than let a person know whether or not they should bring an umbrella when leaving the house, but can help farmers and even prevent forest fires. The software will also be able to help with the climate change crisis and help aircraft’s avoid storms and dangerous areas. Though the software is not yet complete, within the next couple years expect to see more and more accurate predictions or the weather.

#2 Autonomous Cars

Companies like Google are already in the works on creating a fully autonomous (driver-less) car. The cars operate by having a laser radar system that is connected to a generated 3D map of the environment. The car will take in the information from the map and use its laser system to allow it to completely drive independent of any humans. Artificial intelligence is highly accurate and would remove the factor of human flaws and distractions. Though a lot of kinks still need to be figures out, more and more autonomous cars will be on the streets in the near future.

#3 Security/Military

AI is already being used to assist with national security situations as well as protect individual’s homes from burglary. Modern home alarm systems use AI to distinguish between the occupants of the home and unknown individuals. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security uses AI to help keep or country safe from terrorist threats. They use the AI software as a monitoring system that can scan phones and other communication devices to determine potential threats.

#4 Financial Services

Artificial intelligence is already very prevalent within the financial world. Already more than half of all the world’s stock trades are carried out by AI software. The software uses algorithms to spot trends and patterns with the market and helps predict price changes. The software is very accurate and has improved the returns for investors. Companies such as H&R Block have been implementing AI into their process to improve the customer experience and become more accurate with their decision making.

#5 Medical

Within the medical world Artificial intelligence is already being used, but it is getting more and more advantaged every day. It is used to help detect diseases and even heart attacks before they occur. Artificial muscles are being created that mimic the movements and functions of real muscles. Surgeons have been using robots to assist them during surgery in order to be more accurate and precise. They have even created a software that tracks individual’s health records and warns the patients and doctors of potential risk factors. As AI technology evolves many more lives will be saved and or improved.

#6 Modern Marketing

Some would say that modern marketing would be impossible without the implementation of artificial intelligence. Companies like Google and Facebook rely on AI to better target their advertisements as well as to combat fraud and hacks. These companies are able to gather data and specifically send individuals ads or content that is currently relevant to them. Because of AI these companies are able to connect personally to their consumers in real time. Without the implementation of AI in modern world you or your company will quickly fall behind and become irrelevant.

 

 

As you can see artificial intelligence is already very prominent around the world, but is becoming essential to many major jobs and operations around the world. AI can be used in all kinds of ways independent of these 6 examples. Comment below with any questions or insights regarding artificial intelligence!

Images Courtesy of Popularmechanics.com, theverge.com, marketsmedia.com, & adweek.com