Facebook's algorithm is now going to take into account how long you spend on an article after clicking away from the main Facebook app. The network already pays attention to how long you stay on a piece of content in the app, but now it'll track your activity on an article.
Facebook Messenger has been updated and it now comes with free group calling. The feature, which is headed to iOS and Android right now, will appear in the form of a phone icon in the top right corner of group chats. Calls can take place with up to 50 people.
Facebook is trialing an update to its mobile News Feed setup that highlights news sections (e.g. World, US, Sports). It's not the primary feed in Facebook's mobile app, but it does exist as an easily accessible alternative to the regular feed. Some users have seen the layout.
Without artificial intelligence systems, Facebook as we see it today could not exist, says director of applied machine learning Joaquin Quinonero Candela. During the F8 developer conference, Candela spoke about the importance of AI and its role in Facebook.
Automatic tagging already occurs for photos on Facebook and the social network hopes to extend that ability to videos. At the company's F8 developer conference, Facebook explained that tags will be tied to the exact moments when someone is on screen.
To get more companies involved with its live streaming service, Facebook is offering news outlets money. Speaking with Recode, Facebook noted it offers news companies a "financial incentive" to use the platform. It didn't mention which outlets have received money.
Twitter has added the ability to start a direct message directly from a tweet. Each tweet now includes a small DM button that can be clicked to privately share a public post without selecting the "share via DM" option in a tweet's menu. Messages is a growing part of Twitter.
Longer videos are now supported on Instagram, with support for 60-second pieces beginning to roll out. The social network says this feature is just "one step of many" that will be announced in the coming months. This change means Instagram is moving beyond short clips.
Instagram's move to an algorithm-based feed may still be a ways off. The new feed was announced earlier this month, with Instagram stating it would arrive in the coming months. It began appearing for some users this week, however, and that has worried everyone.
Following a bombing in Pakistan that has killed dozens of people, Facebook's Safety Check tool sent notifications around the world to places that weren't affected by the attack. Safety Check is supposed to help Facebook users tell everyone they're safe.
Twitter is testing a feature that lets you apply stickers to photos. Similar to what you can do with Facebook, Twitter's image editor lets you add colorful stickers through a new tab. Only some users have reported seeing the feature and it's still in the testing phase.
Facebook will stop supporting BlackBerry 10 and BBOS by the end of this year, putting BlackBerry in a more difficult spot. The network's departure from BlackBerry comes after WhatsApp (owned by Facebook) announced it'd stop supporting the barely used platform.
Long posts aren't going to be a part of Twitter in the near future. The social network is not getting rid of its 140-character limit on tweets, according to CEO Jack Dorsey. It was widely reported the network was going to ditch that limit, but Dorsey has countered those claims.
Samsung is working on a new kind of social network that lets you post a photo which can be annotated or otherwise altered by friends. The network, called Waffle, is in beta on Android and it comes from Samsung's C-Lab team. Waffle helps people create collaborative stories.
Analyzing tweets can yield valuable information for emergency management agencies, providing responders with information directly from those affected. Research from Yury Kryvasheyeu, a computational physicist, and his team found mapping tweets was better than using FEMA models.
Facebook and Automattic, the company behind WordPress, are working together to expand the availability of Instant Articles. They're releasing a plugin that'll let any WordPress user easily have their content appear as an Instant Article on Facebook, improving load times.
Instagram has begun blocking some outbound links on user profiles if they are headed directly to follow pages on Snapchat or Telegram. If you are trying to use Instagram to boost your presence on other platforms, it seems the social network wants to make things difficult.
Facebook's live video streaming is no longer exclusive to iOS users. The broadcasting feature is now on Android as well, beginning with people in the United States. On iOS, Facebook Live is already operational in the US and abroad. International Android users will get it soon.
Instant Articles will be available to any publisher that wants to use it come April 12. Facebook is opening up the service to all publishers, allowing them to have their content streamlined in the network's news feed. Instant Articles often improves the way content appears.
It's now easier to search for GIFs and add them to your public posts and DMs on Twitter. The social network has rolled out a dedicated GIF search button which helps you easily find the right moving image for your content. Twitter has added the button on iOS, Android, and the web.