Facebook Launches New Camera App

Facebook mobile app
This explains the Instagram deal. If Facebook had launched it’s new mobile camera app without buying Instagram in the first place, everyone and their dogs must have accused Facebook for such blasphemy.

As per Facebook, the new Camera app makes it brain-dead simple for people to click, edit and share photos on the go. It’s currently available for download on the iTunes AppStore. From the video you can make out the app does seem to make it simple to upload multiple photos, add effects and scroll through your friends’ photos.

So now there’s another app to take photos, add effects and paste them all over Facebook. Good lord! I wonder why they didn’t integrate it with their existing Facebook mobile application. Oh wait…thank god they didn’t do that!

Facebook Working On New Timeline Design

facebook timeline design

Facebook is working on making some changes to it’s recently rolled out Timeline profile pages.

“The new look creates subtle but noticeable changes to the top of user profiles, chiefly moving the user’s name, home location, occupation, education, and other basic information into a layer of text atop the “cover photo,” the widescreen image that serves as the backdrop for a user’s profile. The text has been changed to white to stand out against the dark colors of a user’s cover photo.”

I’m a big fan of the new Timeline design. This looks kind of good. Not sure if I’m a fan of the name, home location, education etc. fields moving inside the cover photo, not sure if everyone would appreciate them intruding their creatively placed cover photos.

The most interesting part worth noticing here, especially for marketers, is:

“The new view also adds a whole new tab on a user’s profile, the “Summary,” which when clicked, shows a list of the major “Life Events” of the user. The “Likes” section of a user’s profile has been changed to read “Favorites.”

Likes would now be called Favorites. There’s also a little tab for it on the profile page. This could let users browse through all the things that they’ve liked on a single page. This, if real, could be amazing from a user’s perspective. As of now anything I like gets buried in my newsfeed.

There’s still no word from Facebook on when this would be rolled out for all users. They are currently testing the new design on a small set of users.

GM: Facebook Ads Don’t Work

GM Facebook page

General Motors has claimed that it will stop advertising on Facebook. Why? Simple – they think Facebook ads just don’t work. The announcement comes at a crucial time as the multi-billion Facebook IPO is all set to rock the stock markets this Friday.

Apparently GM spends around $40 million on Facebook marketing alone out of which $10 million is spent on Facebook ads. Whoa! That is a huge number. Pundits may already be in the process of writing super long blog posts stating this may be the start of Facebook’s end. Alright let’s not exaggerate here.

It’s obvious that advertisers, over the period of time, are going to look for a return on their investment. Placing ads worth millions isn’t really going to work if you’re not ‘doing it right’. I don’t see how GM is calculating sales that come from Facebook users who are enticed to buy GM products after clicking on ads. It isn’t a very straightforward process.

Your Photos Last Forever on ‘The Wire’

share photos

A photograph speaks louder than words. Photographs capture memories in the most beautiful way. I still remember the times when we had analog cameras, the ones where one would insert an actual camera roll and manually slide it using a button on the camera. Considering the age of digital cameras now, it’s was entirely fun but when the photos came back from the photo shop, it was a rewarding experience.
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Facebook is BACK, boys!

facebook timeline

The title says it all. It’s almost three in the morning here and my eyeballs want to pop out. Just a few hours ago I was tuned in to F8, like every year, yet this time I felt a kick. I remember the first ever F8 I saw when Mark Zuckerberg revealed Facebook’s API and I was totally blown away. I remember I wrote a tiny Facebook app during my summer training for college. Still remember those expressions when I delivered the presentation. Those teachers had no clue what I was showing them.
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The Buttons on the Web

facebook subscriptionsThere’s something odd yet enticing about the buttons you see on the web. Every button appears coated with sugar or melted chocolate. So when such a thing appears on a page, it grabs your eyeballs and somehow tells your brain to pass on a signal to your hand and your fingers click on it. It happens in less than a fraction of a second and at times you don’t even know what that button does. Take the newly introduced Subscriptions feature on Facebook, for example, it allows you to subscribe to another user’s public feed (in case you’re not in their friend’s list) or manage updates you’ll receive from that user (if they are your friend).

If you’ve seen this button alongside a profile recently, chances are that you’ve clicked it first and then when updates from that stranger started appearing on your newsfeed, you went nuts. This isn’t abnormal. It happens to the best of us and it’s an obvious reason why we have buttons all over the web. I will not get into the design thought that goes behind creating these but rather the human aspect of it.
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My Favorite Indian Brands on Twitter

my favorite brands on twitter

I love Twitter. As much as I hate it for making me so lazy that I don’t feel like blogging anymore, I like it for the micro conversations that one can have with brands. Be it registering an issue you’re having with a specific product/service or just passing on your feedback, Twitter works pretty well given it’s nature of being open. It’s obvious. Your tweets are out there in the open and if brands don’t listen and get back to you to solve your problem, it doesn’t reflect a good image.

So here are my favorite Indian brands on Twitter:
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Thanks to Snaptu, billions of Indians could soon be on Facebook!

Facebook buys Snaptu
Facebook has acquired the Israeli startup Snaptu. The company hopes to close the deal within the next few weeks. Facebook seems to have bought Snaptu for an estimated $70 million. Snaptu brings the world of smartphone application to those who don’t actually own a smartphone. It’s applications allow users to access their social media accounts on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook etc. on their Java enable feature phones. Facebook had earlier started collaborating with Snaptu on making a feature phone application for Facebook that would provide an enhanced smartphone-like experience to the end users.
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