Happy December! Turn up that Michael Bublé Christmas album and settle in for some of the biggest news the tech world has to offer. A lot of stories have broken and developed since we last checked in, but fear not. While the BIGteam was home around our Thanksgiving tables, we were still scrolling through our Twitter feeds keeping tabs on what trends and news were influencing the tech industry. Here are some of the highlights from the past two weeks.
Does pretending you’re having more fun than you are in your Snap Story count as fake news?
According to Snap CEO, Evan Spiegel, the rise of social media came at a huge cost to facts and helped to fuel fake news. Sharing his views in an op-ed piece published on Axios, Spiegel states that the upcoming Snapchat redesign is focused on clearly separating the “social” from the “media.” Spiegel announced the details of the new design in his piece and after years of avoiding the feed, the company is welcoming it with open arms. Rather than mixing in professional creators with your friends content like the feeds of Facebook and Twitter, Snapchat’s new feed will separate them on a distinct friends page and Discover page. Unlike its competitor, Facebook, all content that appears on Snapchat’s Discover page will be reviewed and approved by Snap employees.
To story or not to story. That is the Reel question.
YouTube is getting into the story game with the beta preview of “Reels.” It seems the new existential question for social media execs is “If I don’t have a story feature, am I really a social media company?” The new feature will appear in a separate tab on the app, and allow creators to quickly upload short videos. Reels is YouTube’s own twist on the popular story feature that you see on other social media platforms and enables creators to express themselves and engage fans without having to post a full video. Also unlike stories on other apps, YouTube creators can make multiple Reels and they won’t expire.
If Cyber Monday was the Super Bowl – Amazon would be the New England Patriots
During Thanksgiving, Amazon sales saw a massive boost of $2.87 billion, which is an 18% increase over last year’s sales. Casual. With steals and deals aplenty over the holiday weekend it’s a shock that Cyber Monday didn’t break the internet. With a number of BIGclients participating in the saving, consumer spent $6.59 billion in online sales by the end of the day on Monday, making it the biggest shopping day in American history. Amazon took over 42% of the day’s sales, making Jeff Bezos turn to Walmart and say, “Oh sweetie, just stop. You’re embarrassing yourself.”
In other Amazon news, the company is preparing to launch “Alexa for Business,” a new feature that would open a separate marketplace for business apps. While it is still in development, the new business feature could include tools that help users get connected into telephone conferences or bring up business data.
Ah, Uber. The corporate representation of the trash fire that has been 2017.
During a year riddled with scandals, Uber is out to top itself with the recent news that not only were driver and passenger data hacked, but the company paid off the hackers themselves to keep the breach a secret. Nice. Now governments from around the world are launching investigations into the data breach and cover up. This news comes at the same time that the ride sharing company is attempting to close a deal with SoftBank to buy 30% of the company. Someone get Dara Khosrowshahi a drink.
Want more tech news? Check back here in two weeks for the next edition of BIGnews in the Tech World and follow us on Twitter at @BIGfishPR!