Amazon Go to expand?
The test period for Amazon Go stores, the social and online to real world experiment which allows customers to pick up items, walk out and have their accounts automatically charged, is nearing an end.
In the stores, shoppers scan their smartphones upon arrival and then cameras, sensors and algorithms automatically identify the items they leave with. Customers’ Amazon accounts are charged accordingly, removing the checkout process.
The test stores have been about testing the tech to see if it works – or breaks. One day, three Amazon employees went into a Go store wearing Pikachu costumes and selected some items, and the technology assigned each product to the right employee, charging them correctly.
However, the technology is still having problems, having been previously delayed because it couldn’t handle more than 20 people in store at once. Now it’s struggling to accurately charge groups of people shopping together.
The e-commerce giant needs to iron out these kinks quickly in order to expand the Go trial into more places.
Eight new trust indicators on Google news stories
Google has introduced new trust indicators in a further crackdown on fake news and content.
The first steps Google took to add labels to news stories came last year when Fast Check tagging was launched.
More recently, Google implemented publisher Knowledge panels to educate users about news sources.
Now a series of new indicators aim to help readers identify trustworthy journalism as opposed to misleading information.
These include details of newsroom practices, author expertise, story type, citations and references, motivation for pursuing the story and its source, efforts to bring in diverse perspective and the ability for readers to give feedback.
Create your own tweetstorm
In September, reports surfaced that Twitter was working on a new Tweetstorm feature that would allow users to create a series of automatically linked tweets.
The social network has now confirmed that this is in testing and provides an option to add tweets to your composition process, with the set of tweets listed on screen.
You can go back to any tweet within the sequence and edit while composing. Once you’ve completed your tweets, you tap the ‘Tweet All’ button, and your Tweetstorm will be posted in order, with numbers automatically added to each to signify their place in the chain.
This option will allow users to add extra context to their micro missives, which could prove to be a problem with concerns that the newly instated 280 character tweets, coupled with Tweetstorm, could enable users to post long-winded rants that clutter timelines.
Snapchat users not visiting other social networks
Snapchat doesn’t attract the same social audience figures as Facebook or Instagram but does boast high engagement levels among the younger demographic that brands find traditionally hard to reach.
This is the focus of a new report by App Annie which looks at Snapchat’s unique audience by comparing its active user base and the time they spend in other social apps.
The results show that among Snapchat’s audience aged 25 to 44 , 40 per cent of users don’t visit Facebook on a daily basis and this rises to 48 per cent for Instagram.
Among 13 to 24-year-olds, Snapchat ads can reach roughly 47 million people — about nine million more than Facebook, and 15 million more than Instagram.
Guess what? People can see through phoney brands trying to be authentic
In a world of celebrity endorsements, sponsored posts and paid influencers, 86 per cent of people surveyed in the 2017 Consumer Content Report feel authenticity is vital in deciding which brands they support.
This is especially true of younger generations, with 90 per cent of millennials saying brand authenticity is important.
Authenticity has become vital, not only to brand storytelling, but in every part of the customer experience, including advertising and email. For most of today’s brands, 57 per cent of consumers feel that authenticity is lacking. Seventy per cent of the time those surveyed said they were able distinguish between consumer-created and brand-created content.
On average, 20 per cent of consumers (and 30 per cent of millennials) have unfollowed a brand on social media because they felt the content was inauthentic.