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    👍|Oculus Quest VR headsets testing Facebook ads

    Facebook is testing adverts in apps on the Oculus Quest and Quest 2 headsets. The team at Facebook Reality Labs (FRL) has opened up about the move, and insisted this will help create “a self-sustaining platform”. In a lengthy blog post, Oculus said: “Last month, we announced that we’re starting to test ads in the Oculus mobile app to give developers a new way to showcase their VR applications. “Today, we’re excited to share a look at the next phase of that exploration: a small test of in-headset ads. “The experiment will begin with Blaston from Resolution Games and a couple other developers th…

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    📱|Google adds end-to-end encryption to Andriod

    Google has added end-to-end encryption to Android messages. The tech company first rolled the new service in beta in November and are now set to introduce the feature – which uses Rich Communication Services – on all devices to ensure no third-party has access to user data. Google explained: “No matter who you’re messaging with, the information you share is personal. End-to-end encryption in Messages helps keep your conversations more secure while sending. “It ensures that no one can read the convent of your messages as they travel between your phone and the phone of the person you’re messagin…

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    👍|Facebook buys BigBox VR

    Facebook has acquired BigBox VR. The social media platform – which purchased Oculus Rift in 2014 – has continued its gaming purchases by obtaining the ‘Population: One’ developer. ‘Population: One’ has been a huge hit with gamers, and though it is unclear what the video game’s future will be following the acquisition, Facebook Reality Labs’ Mike Verdu assured that the team will be supported in continued updates and improvements for the game. He said: “We’re excited to help BigBox VR grow and accelerate their vision for POPULATION: ONE as a state-of-the-art VR social gaming experience, as well …

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    👍|Roger Waters slams Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook

    Roger Waters dismissed Mark Zuckerberg’s big-money offer to use Pink Floyd’s ‘Another Brick in the Wall, Part 2’ in an Instagram ad without any hesitation. The 77-year-old musician has described the co-founder and current CEO of Facebook as a “little p****” and has accused his company of trying to takeover “absolutely everything”. Speaking during a pro-Julian Assange event, he said: “[A letter] arrived this morning, with an offer for a huge, huge amount of money. And the answer is, ‘F*** you. No f******’ way.'” Roger then turned his attention towards the billionaire businessman and his company…

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    👍|Facebook Pay introduced in US

    Facebook is letting US users use QR codes and payment links to send or request money. The Facebook Pay service will let people – “even if they’re not connected” to the social media platform – to handle money through the Messenger app. In a blog post, the company said: “We’ve rolled out the ability for US Messenger users to leverage QR codes and payment links when they want to send or request money with Facebook Pay, even if they’re not connected on Facebook. “No need to download a separate payment app or add new contacts on the fly! “To access your personal QR code and payment link, visit your… More

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    👍|Facebook will let employees to work remotely if…

    Facebook will let all employees work from home where possible after the COVID-19 pandemic. The company is said to have reassured staff that if they are able to do their jobs away from the office, they will be allowed to do so. It’s said the social media giant told employees that “anyone whose role can be done remotely can request remote work”. An executive told the Wall Street Journal that the company had approved around 90% of requests to work from home, although they didn’t say how many people asked to do so. Facebook founder and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg has told staff he intends to w…

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    👍|Facebook smartwatch ‘planned for 2022’

    Facebook is reportedly set to release a smartwatch in 2022. The social networking company is said to be planning to drop a wearable device next summer. According to The Verge, sources have said the smartwatch would include two cameras for photos and video, alongside health features such as a heart rate monitor. The initial version is expected to launch in 2022 at around $400, and the device would boast LTE connectivity and a range of colours. Although Facebook hasn’t commented officially, Andrew Bosworth – the company’s vice president of AR and VR – tweeted: “We’ve said we want AR glasses to b…

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    👍|Maren Morris and Gabby Barrett pull out of CMT …

    Maren Morris and Gabby Barrett will no longer be appearing at tonight’s (09.06.21) CMT Music Awards. The country stars were due to perform at the ceremony in Nashville, Tennessee, but have been forced to pull out at the last minute. Maren, who was due to sing ‘Line by Line’ with JP Saxe, cited a “scheduling conflict” as the reason for her having to cancel her appearance. The 31-year-old star told fans on her Instagram Story: “Due to a scheduling conflict, I will not be performing at the CMT Music Awards on Wednesday. “I know @jpsaxe will slay it and I am so excited for his album to come out so… More

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    👍|New Playdate console will now come with 24 games

    Panic’s new Playdate handheld console will come with 24 games instead of 12. The company – who started life making iOS and Mac software and whose games releases include ‘Untitled Goose Game’ and ‘Firewatch’ – has given an update on the pocket-sized machine which will now cost $179 instead of $149, but will come with 24 games instead of 12 as originally planned and the internal storage has been increased from 2GB to 4GB. The update to the console’s specifications was released via Instagram and a video update on the Playdate which will include information on launch content, future games, pre-ord…

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    👍|Twitter tackling misinformation with warning la…

    Twitter is reportedly set to tackle misinformation with warning labels. The social media site is planning on incorporating a new tiered warning label system that will flag tweets that don’t contain facts, with harsher labels being attached to messages that are sharing the most dangerous misinformation. According to app researcher Jane Manchun Wong, Twitter is testing three new labels titled ‘Get the Latest’, ‘Stay Informed’, and ‘Misleading’. How accurate a tweet is determines if Twitter’s systems use one of these three labels, each of which includes a prompt directing users to additional info…

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    📱|Google Nest to integrate with Apple and Amazon …

    Google Nest is set to integrate with Apple’s HomeKit and Amazon’s Alexa. According to the tech giant, the upcoming development will let users set up gadgets in smart homes controlled by another company’s devices. In a blog post, Google recently said: “All Nest displays and speakers, like the Nest Hub and Nest Mini, will be automatically updated to control Matter devices, giving you faster and more reliable experiences whether they use Wi-Fi, Thread or ethernet. “Plus, we’ll update the newest Nest Thermostat to support Matter – meaning for the first time it can be controlled on other platforms …

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    📱|Google Nest to integrate with Apple and Amazon …

    Google Nest is set to integrate with Apple’s HomeKit and Amazon’s Alexa. According to the tech giant, the upcoming development will let users set up gadgets in smart homes controlled by another company’s devices. In a blog post, Google recently said: “All Nest displays and speakers, like the Nest Hub and Nest Mini, will be automatically updated to control Matter devices, giving you faster and more reliable experiences whether they use Wi-Fi, Thread or ethernet. “Plus, we’ll update the newest Nest Thermostat to support Matter – meaning for the first time it can be controlled on other platforms …

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    👍|Twitter Blue subscription service listed in app…

    Twitter has listed a ‘Twitter Blue’ subscription service on app stores. The social media platform looks to be getting ready to test the new service – which is listed at £2.49 in the UK and $2.99 in the US – which is said to include special features for users. According to reports, those who sign-up could get a reader mode to help with longer threads, and even an “undo tweets” tool. Tech blogger Jane Manchun Wong says as well as the undo tweet option, the service also includes customisable colour schemes for the app and Twitter app icon itself. Although Twitter hasn’t commented on Twitter Blue …

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    👍|Britney Spears reflects on being a young mother…

    Britney Spears has reflected on having children “very young” in a throwback Instagram post. The 39-year-old pop star took to the social media site to share a photo of herself with sons Sean, 15, and Jason, 14 – who she has with former husband Kevin Federline – when they were toddlers and joked about being a “baby mama”, who all young children used to “flock” to. Britney captioned the photo: “I had my babies very young… at all the pools we went to on tours, all the babies flocked to me because I always brought the the most toys… I really am a baby mamma!!!! (sic)” The ‘Toxic’ hitmaker had p…

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    👍|Instagram like count returns

    Users can now choose whether to display their like count on Instagram and Facebook. The photo-sharing site have been trialling removing the message that displayed how many likes a picture has on the site in order to reduce pressure for users, but they have now decided to allow the likes to be displayed – or turned off if someone prefers it this way. In a blog post, they wrote: “You may have noticed that we’ve been testing hiding like counts on Instagram for a while. Today, we’re announcing that everyone on Instagram and Facebook will now have the option to hide their public like counts, so the…

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    📱|Google is rolling out Fuchsia OS on original Ne…

    Google has started rolling out Fuchsia OS. This week, the tech giant has launched its new software on the first-generation Nest Hub, and it will replace the existing Cast OS. According to the company itself, the update process is set to take place over the coming months with no changes to user experience. Google has previously hailed the system – which was first teased back in 2016 – as something for “modern phones and modern personal computers”. They have now suggested it’s meant as a general-purpose operating system, although there’s no word yet regarding other devices. Speaking in 2019 and …

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    📱|Google AI to help spot skin conditions with new…

    Google has announced a new tool using artificial intelligence to spot skin, hair and nail conditions. The “dermatology assist tool” – which uses images uploaded by patients – will launch a trial later this year, and has been awarded a CE mark for use in Europe. In a blog post following its reveal at the company’s I/O conference this week, they explained: “Once you launch the tool, simply use your phone’s camera to take three images of the skin, hair or nail concern from different angles. “You’ll then be asked questions about your skin type, how long you’ve had the issue and other symptoms that…

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    👍|Alec Baldwin slams cancel culture

    Alec Baldwin has described cancel culture as a destructive “forest fire”. The ‘Saturday Night Live’ alum has insisted no one – the “deserving and the undeserving” – is safe from cancel culture, which he has likened to a fire in “constant need of fuel”. Writing on the microblogging platform, he shared: “Cancel culture is like a forest fire in constant need of fuel. Functioning objectively. No prejudice. “No code. Just destroy. The deserving and the undeserving alike. (sic)” Alec previously took a break from Twitter, calling it a “party where everyone is screaming”. When his wife Hilaria Baldwin…

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    👍|Sophie Anderton launches style Instagram segment

    Sophie Anderton has launched her own style Instagram segment. The 43-year-old model – who is due to tie the knot with Count Kaz Balinski-Jundzill later this year – posts weekly using the hashtag #sophiexstyle to share her fashion finds from the high street and designer labels and she also shares clips on IGTV. Sophie is quoted by the Daily Mail newspaper’s Sebastian Shakespeare column as saying: “In light of my absolute unwavering love for fashion, I decided to bite the bullet and launch a weekly fashion segment.” She added: “Fashion for me is about individuality and an expression of oneself, …

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    👍|Facebook tests prompt to warn users against sha…

    Facebook has announced plans to test a prompt to warn users against sharing articles they haven’t read. The social media platform has revealed details of the new feature, which is aimed at battling misinformation on the site. Facebook explained: “Starting today, we’re testing a way to promote more informed sharing of news articles. “If you go to share a news article link you haven’t opened, we’ll show a prompt encouraging you to open it and read it, before sharing it with others.” A pop-up message will appear when someone tries to share a piece they haven’t actually read, advising them: “You a…

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    📱|Clubhouse launching on Android

    Clubhouse is launching on Google’s Android. The invitation-only live-audio app – which has only been available on Apple’s App Store since its initial release over a year ago – has seen downloads drop significantly after a spike in popularity this year. Now, the platform has been testing the app for users in the US, with UK and other English-speaking countries set to follow “in the coming days”. In a blog post, the company said: “We are thrilled to share that Clubhouse for Android will start rolling out in beta immediately. “We will begin gradually, with the U.S. today, followed by other Englis…

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    👍|Twitter’s Tip Jar could be next OnlyFans

    Twitter’s new tip feature has been labelled as the new OnlyFans. The new feature on the platform is being called Tip Jar, where people can make payments to their favourite content creators on the platforms using payment services like Venmo and Paypal, and it is believed many may swap the subscription website in favour of Twitter to earn money. At present, a number of journalists, nonprofits and artists have been allowed to add a Tip Jar icon to their profile as testing gets underway for the new feature. In a statement, Twitter said: “We $ee you – sharing your PayPal link after your Tweet goes …

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    📱|Google offers flexibility to staff after pandemic

    Google has offered more flexibility as staff return to the office. Back in December, the tech giant’s CEO Sundar Pichai revealed plans for a hybrid work model with most employees coming in three days a week. Now, he has told staff in a memo that 20% of the company is expected to work permanently from home. As reported by CNET, a further 20% of staff might work from a different Google office to their usual on if they wanted to, while 40% would also be left working from their normal office a few days each week. The news comes after Google unveiled new features for its offices, including inflatab…

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    👍|Twitter suspends account sharing Donald Trump’s…

    Twitter has suspended an account which was sharing posts from Donald Trump’s new communications platform. The account – which claimed to be tweeting “on behalf” of the former US President – is said to be violated the site’s bad evasion policy. According to a spokesperson, the profile had broken the rules by sharing content “affiliated with a suspended account”. Under the microblogging platform’s ban evasion policy, users are prohibited from a range of actions regarding permanently suspended accounts. The page reads: “Our rules exist to help keep everyone using Twitter safe and ensure they can …

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    👍|Twitter prompts users to reconsider mean tweets

    Twitter has started prompting its users to reconsider “potentially harmful or offensive” replies. The social media platform tested the feature last year and will now roll it out to English language accounts on Apple and Android. In a blog post, Twitter said: “People come to Twitter to talk about what’s happening, and sometimes conversations about things we care about can get intense and people say things in the moment they might regret later. “That’s why in 2020, we tested prompts that encouraged people to pause and reconsider a potentially harmful or offensive reply before they hit send. “Bas…

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    📱|Google Stadia staff join Haven Studios

    Haven Studios has welcomed more Google Stadia Staff. Corey May – who served as lead writer, script writer and later narrative director on several ‘Assassin’s Creed’ games over a 12-year period – also worked as head of creative services at Stadia. Now, Jade Raymond – who set up Haven earlier this year – has welcomed Corey and several others to bolster the new studio. As reported by Cyberia, Sebastian Puel – who was the brand’s general manager – has also made the jump, alongside at least four more former team members. Raymond founded the Montreal studio in March, which came a month after Google …

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    👍|Instagram Live Rooms’ new feature

    Instagram Live Rooms hosts can now mute audio. The social media platform unveiled the new Live Rooms back in March, which allows four users to chat at once rather than just one on one, but an all important new feature has been added, which will allow the host of the live stream to mute the audio. The user is also able to switch their video off. Instagram said in a statement: “By giving people the option to mute their audio or turn off their video, hosts will have added flexibility for their livestream experience, as the added functionality could help decrease pressure to look or sound a certai…

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    📱|Gmail launching External label

    Google has updated its Gmail service with an “External” label”. The tech giant is looking to help users stay safe from malware and spam, and it’s taking action with email threads including recipients from outside your organisation. They will now be labelled “External” – which will be visible both on desktop and Android this month with a roll-out set to take up to 15 days – inside a yellow button next to the email header. The company will update users once the feature is available on iOS. In a Workspace Updates blog, Google explained “The “External” label and the reply warning banner and label …

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    👍|Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelos celebrate 25th we…

    Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelos are celebrating 25 years of marriage. The couple marked a quarter of a century married on Saturday (01.05.21) with sweet matching posts on photo sharing site Instagram, where Kelly branded Mark the “love of her life”. Taking to Instagram to share a sweet anniversary tribute to her husband, she wrote: “Happy 25th Anniversary to the love of my life @instasuelos in the blink of an eye. Because when you know, you know. Thank you for all of the dreams you made reality … (wedding, 5,10,15,20……..#25) #silver (sic)” Whilst Mark shared a video of some of their favour…

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    👍|Anna Kendrick: The Kid Mero was my guardian ang…

    Anna Kendrick has described The Kid Mero as her “guardian angel” for helping her restore her Twitter after it was hacked. The ‘Pitch Perfect’ star was left in a panic back in December when she lost control of her account to a hacker who proceeded to post a host of offensive messages and spam her friends under her name. The security breach happened late at night so Anna’s team we’re not awake to help her put a halt to the social media crisis, but ‘Desus & Mero’ star The Kid Mero came to her rescue and got her account secured again, something she was so grateful for. Speaking on ‘The Jess Cagle …

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    👍|Facebook joins Rust Foundation

    Facebook has officially joined the Rust Foundation. The non-profit organisation – which was launched earlier in 2021 with founding members Microsoft, Google, Huawei, Mozilla and Amazon Web Services (AWS) – now counts the social media platform among its roster. The open source programming language – originally developed by Mozilla in 2010 – has been a favourite with developers over the past decade. Facebook first used the language for its own internal source control tool five years ago, but now it has formalised its association with the language. The engineering team wrote in a blog post: “For …

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    👍|John Legend explains Chrissy Teigen’s Twitter r…

    John Legend believes women are targeted by social media trolls more than men. The ‘Conversations in the Dark’ singer’s wife Chrissy Teigen recently returned to Twitter after a three-week break and he explained why she felt she needed time away from the platform because of the people who felt they could be “cruel” because the site offers them anonymity. However, the ‘Chrissy’s Court’ star ultimately “missed” the positive moments and interaction with her fans. In an upcoming interview with Tamron Hall, John said: “For social media, the downside is you get lots of feedback, a lot of good feedback…

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    👍|Hailey Bieber doesn’t use Instagram in the week

    Hailey Bieber doesn’t use Instagram in the week. The model has revealed she doesn’t use social media between Monday and Friday as she admits she has some “insecurities” from seeing so many perfect people posting across the platform. Speaking to Harper’s Bazaar magazine, she said: “I’m only 24, and I’m still figuring out who I am as a woman. Who I am in my career. Who I am as a wife. There’s so much going on, I had to give myself a break from looking at myself and other people, though. I had to start doing this thing where I don’t go on Instagram Monday through Friday. If something needs to be …

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    👍|Facebook News Feed improvements

    Facebook wants to improve users’ News Feed experience. The company is looking to gather more feedback from users about the posts they see on the social networking platform, and use that information to improve how the content is displayed. The company is running global tests to survey people and find out which posts are inspirational, which are seen as the material users prefer to see. Facebook will also ask people about the amount of posts they see about specific topics. In a blog post, the site added: “Even though your News Feed contains posts from the friends, Groups and Pages you’ve chosen …

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    👍|Maya Jama: Instagram can warp minds

    Maya Jama thinks Instagram filters can “warp” minds. The 26-year-old star has admitted to experimenting with various filters over the years, but she recognises that they can have a damaging impact. She shared: “I’ve tried to stay away, but there was one stage in lockdown when I was using them loads. “I did a story saying I’m going to stop using them because you end up getting used to it, and then, when you don’t have them on you think, ‘Actually I don’t really like how that looks’ and it warps your own mind, so I’ve tried to cut down.” Maya – who previously dated the rapper Stormzy – observed …