Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook messages were retracted from the inboxes of some users, six sources told TechCrunch in April. Facebook quickly tried to normalize that breach of trust by claiming it would in the coming months give everyone the ability to unsend messages. We haven’t heard a word about it since, and Facebook told me it had nothing more to share here today.
Well Snap is stepping up. Snapchat will let you retract your risqué, embarrassing or incriminating messages thanks to a new feature called Clear Chats that’s rolling out globally over the next few weeks.
Hold down on a text, image, video, memory, sticker or audio note in a one-on-one or group chat Snapchat message thread and you’ll see a Delete button. Tap it, and Snapchat will try to retract the messag [...]
Last week TechCrunch reported Instagram will launch a long-form video hub, with a tentative June 20th launch date. Now Instagram is asking reporters to RSVP for a June 20th “special event,” confirming our scoop’s date. The invitation simply reads “Instagram has some news to share, and we want you to be the first to hear about it.” This is Instagram’s chance to evolve from social media to just ‘media,’ stealing longer mobile viewing sessions away from YouTube and Snapchat Discover.
Instagram plans to launch Snapchat Discover-style video hub
Here are the details of the long-form video hub that we’ve heard from our sources:
Format: Instagram will let creators upload 4K, full-screen, vertically oriented videos ranging much longer tha [...]
TCL just dropped the sequel to the KeyOne, the company’s surprisingly good keyboard-sporting BlackBerry handset. We reviewed it roughly this time last year, and it was almost enough to restore our faith in the possibilities of BlackBerry as a brand. Almost. Of course, that had much more to do with TCL’s ability to create solid hardware than any residual BB legacy.
The Key2 builds on the promise of its predecessor, bringing back the physical keyboard and familiar BlackBerry-styled design, constructed around a 4.5-inch touchscreen and aluminum frame. The phone, naturally, runs Android (8.1 to start), loaded up with your standard suite of BlackBerry software, including DTEK. The security app has been updated with a new Proactive Health feature, which offers a full system scan.
As TCL pr [...]
Essential has been nearly radio silent since reports surfaced late last month that Andy Rubin was looking for a buyer for his hardware startup. The company didn’t really confirm or deny the rumors — or say much else for that matter. A few weeks later, the company does have some news — but it’s not what you were most likely expecting.
The startup just dropped the second modular accessory for its first smartphone. The Audio Adapter HD features a built-in amp and the ability to play back MQA (Master Quality Authenticated), a hi-res streaming audio technology. Oh, and there’s a 3.5mm audio jack, because everything that’s old is new again.
Bonus track: We teamed up with @TIDAL to give new and existing Essential Phone customers a free 3-month TIDAL HiFi subscription. Learn how to [...]
At Apple’s WWDC 2018 — an event some said would be boring this year with its software-only focus and lack of new MacBooks and iPads — the company announced what may be its most important operating system update to date with the introduction of iOS 12. Through a series of Siri enhancements and features, Apple is turning its iPhone into a highly personalized device, powered by its Siri AI.
This “new AI iPhone” — which, to be clear, is your same ol’ iPhone running a new mobile OS — will understand where you are, what you’re doing and what you need to know right then and there.
The question now is will users embrace the usefulness of Siri’s forthcoming smarts, or will they find its sudden insights creepy and invasive?
Siri Suggestio [...]
“‘You Are Now Connected On Messenger’ Is The Worst Thing On Facebook” BuzzFeed’s Katie Notopoulos correctly pointed out in a story yesterday. When you friend someone on Facebook or Messenger, or an old friend joins Messenger, you often get one of these annoying notifications. They fool you into thinking someone actually wants to chat with you while burying your real message threads.
Luckily, it turns out Facebook was already feeling guilty about this shameless growth hack. When I asked why, amidst its big push around Time Well Spent, it was sending these alerts, the company told me it’s already in the process of scaling them back.
A Facebook spokesperson gave TechCrunch this statement:
We’ve found that many people have appreciated getting a notif [...]
Panda has built the next silly social feature Snapchat and Instagram will want to steal. Today the startup launches its video messaging app that fills the screen with augmented reality effects based on the words you speak. Say “Want to get pizza?” and a 3D pizza slice hovers by your mouth. Say “I wear my sunglasses at night” and suddenly you’re wearing AR shades with a moon hung above your head. Instead of being distracted by having to pick effects out of a menu, they appear in real-time as you chat.
Panda is surprising and delightful. It’s also a bit janky, created by a five person team with under $1 million in funding. Building a video chat app user base from scratch amidst all the competition will be a struggle. But even if Panda isn’t the app [...]
You can now buy game and concert tickets from teams and musicians within Snapchat, thanks to an integration with SeatGeek .
While Snapchat has started testing e-commerce features in the past few months, SeatGeek says this is the first ticket-buying experience built into the Snapchat app.
The Los Angeles Football Club was the first team to sell tickets through this integration, by posting a Snapchat Story (and a Snapcode on the team website) that allowed users to swipe up to buy tickets to the May 26 game. The full purchase experience takes place without leaving the app.
“We’re always looking to reach our fans in innovative ways, and selling tickets directly to our followers on Snapchat gives us an incredible opportunity to connect with our most dedicated supporters,” said Los Angel [...]