Connect with us

Science & Technology

Facebook adds camera features, moving closer to Snapchat

Published

on

SAN FRANCISCO —  Facebook Inc is giving the camera a central place on its smartphone app for the first time, encouraging users to take more pictures and edit them with digital stickers that show the influence of rival Snapchat.

Shares of Snapchat owner Snap Inc <SNAP.N>, which held its initial public offering this month, were down 4.1 percent at $22.85 after Facebook announcement.

With an update scheduled to take effect on Tuesday, Facebook will allow users to get to the app’s camera with one swipe of their finger and then add visual details like a rainbow or a beard of glitter.

Users will be able to share a picture privately with a friend, rather than to all of their friends, and add a picture to a gallery known as a “story,” similar to a feature on the Snapchat app.

Snapchat popularized sharing of digitally decorated photographs on social media, especially among teenagers, and exposed a weakness of Facebook as the companies battle for eyeballs and leisure time.

Snap has recently emphasized its ambitions to build gadgets and has called itself a camera company rather than a social media network. Some analysts have warned that Snap is susceptible to competition from Facebook.

Facebook, which with 1.86 billion users is the industry leader, denies it took its camera ideas from Snapchat and says it got them from its own users.

“Our goal here is to give people more to do on Facebook, and that’s really been the main inspiration,” Connor Hayes, a Facebook product manager, said in a briefing with reporters.

In a glimpse of how the features could tie in with other businesses, one of the first camera effects will be the ability to morph someone in a photograph into a yellow, cartoon “Minion.” The latest Minion movie, “Despicable Me 3,” is due out in a few
months from Comcast Corp’s NBC Universal.

Facebook has deals to license content from six film studios, as well as from two artists, said design director Kristen Spilman.
Another visual effect allows someone in a picture to “become a laser cat with super powers,” Spilman said.

The effects will vary by location. Spilman said that when Facebook tested the ability to add the phrase “LOL,” the acronym for “laugh out loud,” users in Ireland did not know what it meant.

Continue Reading

Science & Technology

Google blocks YouTube on Amazon devices

Published

on

KATHMANDU — Google is pulling its popular YouTube video streaming from Amazon’s Fire TV and Echo Show devices in an escalating feud that has caught consumers in the crossfire.

The internet search giant, owned by Alphabet, said on Tuesday that the decision to block YouTube from Fire TV and Echo Show was due to a ‘lack of reciprocity’ from Amazon, and followed failed attempts to reach an agreement over mutual access to products and services for customers of both companies.

Experts say the steps mark an escalation of a business row in which consumers have been caught up in the fallout. Previously, Amazon had stopped selling several of Google’s hardware products.

Amazon and Google square off in many areas, from cloud computing and online search, to selling voice-controlled gadgets like the Google Home and Amazon Echo Show.

Amazon`s suite of voice-controlled devices has outsold Google`s so far, according to a study by research firm eMarketer from earlier this year.

ALSO READ :  Nepal Telecom prepares for SMS alerts on possible disaster

In a statement, Google said, “Amazon doesn’t carry Google products like Chromecast and Google Home, doesn’t make (its) Prime Video available for Google Cast users, and last month stopped selling some of (our sister company) latest products.”

“Given this lack of reciprocity, we are no longer supporting YouTube on Echo Show and Fire TV,” Google said. “We hope we can reach an agreement to resolve these issues soon.”

Amazon,since 2015, has refused to sell Google’s Chromecast video and audio-streaming dongles.

Amazon said in a statement, “Google is setting a disappointing precedent by selectively blocking customer access to an open website.”

It said it hoped to resolve the issue with Google as soon as possible but customers could access YouTube through the internet — not an app — on the devices in the meantime.

Amazon had explained the move by saying it wanted to avoid confusing customers who might expect its Prime Video service to be available on devices sold by Amazon.

Amazon and Apple mended ties earlier this year when it was announced Prime Video would come to Apple TV. Not so with Google.

Agencies

Continue Reading
Advertisement Cheap Air fare and package tours!
Advertisement
Advertisement Miss Gorkha  2017

LATEST TWEET

TOP PICKS