Twitter wants to know you better
In order to serve up ever more targeted ads to its 284million users, twitter is trying to get to know you – yes, YOU – more intimately.
The micro blogging platform will now start tracking which apps you have installed on your phone or tablet and use the information to improve the relevance of adverts and other content that slips into your twitter stream, such as favourites.
Can we trust that it won’t collect data from within those apps, too? Twitter insists it won’t and that it will let you know before it starts to monitor you. However, it’s an opt-out rather than opt-in service, meaning it will begin gathering the information unless you explicitly say ‘no’.
Users of third party services such as tweetbot or tweetdeck won’t be affected by this development.
What does Facebook’s new policy update actually mean?
All Facebook users have had notification in the last week that the social network is updating its policies to give users ‘more control’. But what does it mean in reality?
It’s centred on the introduction of a ‘Privacy Basics’ page, that lets account holders opt out of certain kinds of advertising across all devices they use. It also promises more information on how location services, battery and signal strength are used by Facebook. No actual settings will be changed in the update, it’s all about providing information so that users can make the changes themselves.
This came days after MPs on the parliamentary and technology select committee warned Facebook that it had to make its terms and conditions easier to understand, giving the example that only a tiny fraction of users of Facebook Messenger knew it can gain direct access to an individual’s mobile and take pictures or make videos at any time without explicit consent.
Better call Sol
In search of a better connection with its audience, Mexican beer giant Sol has taken the novel approach of launching a new search platform.
Sol Search can be used on any device and will suggest alternative independent cafes, bars and restaurants to users who want something different from the norm – it has launched with London listings and will soon be rolled out in further cities worldwide.
The application is not seen as a sales driver, but to add credibility to a brand that has been around for 115 years and is seen as appealing to more mature consumers.
Quikkly aims to crack the code
QR codes just refuse to die, despite widespread public apathy to using them. A new service, Quikkly, has been launched with the aim of providing a quicker call to action for users. The company has produced what it calls ‘Action Tags’ that trigger a user action, such as listening to a track on Spotify, posting a tweet, adding a contact to your address book or connecting to public wifi.
The clear sign-posting of each tag aims to encourage more engagement than with regular QR codes. Users can also create their own tags that can be placed on flyers, posters or business cards.
Barclays banking on video appointments
The UK’s first video banking service has been launched by Barclays. The facility will be made available to selected customers, who will be able to have secure face to face meetings from their mobile phones, tablet or laptop. Next year, it will be rolled out to mortgage, business and wealth customers. If successful, it will then be made available to all customers, making this first step a potential watershed moment for the way that we bank.