Facebook Mean Business
Facebook has revealed a new set of updates for business pages, designed to help them improve their visibility, whilst making it easier for customers to interact with them.
Users asking for recommendations about where to go, where to eat, or where to shop will now be more prominent on their friends’ feeds. Likewise, Stories from businesses will also have increased visibility.
Other new and enhanced features expected to roll out soon include: the option to book appointments and make reservations within the page; updated features to help businesses advertise job vacancies; and a new ‘browse local’ section of the Facebook app for people to find nearby businesses and events.
Snapchat fails to make new friends
The latest financial results released from Snapchat have revealed that between April and June, the platform’s active daily user numbers shrank from 191 million to 188 million – a 1.5% decline.
This sharp drop follows the controversial app redesign, which lead to over a million users signing a petition for the company to reverse the changes. Snapchat has also faced strong competition from Instagram, which has replicated many of the app’s unique features.
Take the wheel, Alexa
Amazon has released an open source Alexa Automotive Core Software Development Kit to help car manufacturers integrate Alexa voice control into their new models.
The software, which is free to download from GitHub, is designed to bring the Alexa Assistant to in-car dashboards, allowing users to accomplish tasks through voice recognition commands: this will allow them to play music, get directions to requested destinations and make phone calls.
Alexa has already been adopted by carmakers such as Ford and Toyota, where the Assistant can be used for tasks such as locking doors and starting the engine. With the launch of this kit, more automobile makers can tailor custom commands that work for their vehicles.
WhatsApp reveal new tools for businesses
WhatsApp has launched new tools to make it easier for customers to connect with businesses.
Now, when a customer needs a shipping confirmation or boarding pass, they can send their mobile number to the business via their website, app, or in store for the information to be delivered through WhatsApp.
Click-to-chat buttons will also be available for businesses to add to their websites or Facebook ads to let users quickly send them a message should they need immediate support.
Ok Google, what’s new?
Google Home has updated the way it presents you with a news story.
The Assistant has always been able to give you a quick summary of the news when you ask for an update on a specific event or story; for example, ‘tell me more about PGA Championships.’ Now, Google Home will follow up the summary by sending three news stories on the topic from different sources to your phone and ask you if you would like for it to continue reading from one of these.