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WhatsApp has a killer feature on the way

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There’s a lot to like about WhatsApp, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of ways it could be improved. For starters, you can’t use a single phone number on multiple devices at the same time, among other things.

Well for those of you that rock multiple phones, there’s some good news. If the option to mute people forever wasn’t enough, it looks like multi-device support is on the way too.

The information comes from WABetaInfo, which has been trawling the beta versions of WhatsApp to see what’s coming. While multi-device support isn’t ready to use yet, there are signs that it’s coming — including a menu illustrating how the feature might work.

It looks like the future version of WhatsApp will let you link your account to another device, and see which of them currently have a WhatsApp session open. It’s much like the current WhatsApp web interface, though it suggests that you’ll be able to access your account from something other than a web browser.

The feature doesn’t work right now, so it’s impossible to say how it might work. We would hope that it involves actual access to your WhatsApp account on a new mobile device, rather than what is effectively a mirrored version of whatever appears on the “prime” phone.

Should that be the case, multi-device access would rely on your phone being powered on and connected to the internet, which isn’t exactly ideal. Still it would beat having to activate your account every time you need to use a different phone, and losing access to the original in the process.

We’re hoping it’s true multi-device support, as you’d get with other messaging services. The option to log in and out at will, essentially. For one, it doesn’t have the issue of being tied to a prime device and it also has the potential to considerably improve WhatsApp’s desktop experience.

We’ve already seen that WhatsApp is bringing video and audio calls to its web app, but that whole thing would be much better if it wasn’t reliant on your smartphone. True multi-device support could make it properly independent, with no more scanning QR codes to log in.

Of course that comes with its own issues. Messages would have to be stored somewhere in the cloud, rather than on user devices, which has issues relating to privacy and cost of operation. And the more WhatsApp costs to run, the more likely Facebook is to try and monetize it more aggressively than it has done up to now.

Multi-device support isn’t available yet, but if you want to be able to try it as soon as it’s ready you’ll need to join the WhatsApp beta program. Android users have to head to the WhatsApp Beta page on Google Play and sign up, while Apple users will have to wait and see if any free spaces open up on the Testflight page.

Source: https://www.tomsguide.com/news/whatsapp-has-a-killer-feature-on-the-way

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Internet

Snap to pay video creators $1 million daily

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The fast-growing public listed American social media company – Snap Inc., plans to release new functionality to its Snapchat app in order to enable popular videos that would be termed as Spotlight, and further disclosed it will pay $1 million per day to the creators of high performing videos.

According to Bloomberg, Snap revealed how content creators could earn such income with ease, as the level of entry was kept minimal, on the basis that video submitters to Spotlight do not need to have large followers or popular profiles.

What you should know

An algorithm from the app software will be the judge in realizing what videos Snapchat users will see based on how often Snap users view such videos.

If other snap chat users view the same content repeatedly, for example, that’s an alert it’s trending and this will trigger the algorithm to distribute it more widely.

What this means

The new feature will give Snapchat enough ammunition to fend off its rivals in an ever-changing competitive market for posting trendy videos online, which has been largely controlled by Google’s YouTube, Facebook Inc.’s Instagram, and China-based ByteDance Ltd.’s popularly known TikTok.

Tech Experts anticipate that such a new feature in its trendy app could generate more revenue for the company, as its recent earnings show it has 249 million daily active users in Q3 – such high numbers will attract global brands on advertising and enable more sponsored content.

The investors of the American social media company have earned high returns from its stock in 2020 alone, as its stock has almost tripled this year to a record $45.38million on the bias that an increasing number of young people spend more time on the app.

Source: https://nairametrics.com/2020/11/23/snap-to-pay-video-creators-1-million-daily/

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Google’s latest Chrome update delivers ‘largest performance gain in years’

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Google is wrapping up 2020 with what it claims are major performance enhancements to the company’s Google Chrome browser. “This month’s update represents the largest gain in Chrome performance in years,” Matt Waddell, Chrome’s director of product, wrote in a blog post. Sounds pretty exciting on the surface, no? Waddell says a slew of under-the-hood changes and optimizations have led to boosts to Chrome on several fronts.

The first has to do with tabs. Chrome now will prioritize your active tab over the others in the background, “reducing CPU usage by up to 5x and extending battery life by up to 1.25 hours (based on our internal benchmarks).” Google goes into greater detail on just what it’s doing to keep tabs in check (hint: it involves throttling JavaScript) at the Chromium blog. “We’ve done this without sacrificing the background features that users care about, like playing music and getting notifications.”

But even opening Chrome should feel faster. The browser now launches 25 percent faster — hopefully to where you’ll notice the difference. It loads pages up to 7 percent faster, “and does all of this using less power and RAM than before.”

Google is also adding tab search, which is exactly what it sounds like and could be a godsend for those of us buried under an avalanche of them. “You’ll now be able to see a list of your open tabs — regardless of the window they’re in — then quickly type to find the one you need.” This feature is debuting on Chromebooks first and then expanding to other desktop versions of Chrome.

The address bar is getting a bit more useful with something Google calls Chrome Actions, “a faster way to get things done with just a few keystrokes.”

For example: when you type “edit passwords,” or “delete history,” you can now take action directly from the bar. Our first set of actions — available initially on desktop — focuses on privacy and security, so you can increase your peace of mind in a few clicks.

And last, you might soon notice “cards” when you open a new tab in Chrome.

To help you jump back into activities like planning a meal, researching a holiday gift, or winding down with a video, we’ll soon add cards to your new tab page in Chrome. Clicking on them will take you to recently-visited and related content on the web, and save you time in the process.”

For now, cards will only appear “for some users” beneath the shortcuts area; Google says it’s planning to add entertainment-focused cards in 2021.

All these things together add up to a significant update for the world’s most popular web browser. And they come on the very day that Apple is being lauded for the speed and efficiency of its new M1 Mac computers. Speaking of which, Chrome for macOS also gets a new icon that’s a better fit for the latest Big Sur release. But if the optimizations actually meet Google’s claims, I’m way more excited about the improved efficiency. The update to Chrome 87 is rolling out beginning today.

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Facebook and Instagram are getting Vanish Mode in chats

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Ten days ago WhatsApp got Disappearing Messages and now the other two apps with messaging abilities in the Facebook family are adopting it. Both Messenger and Instagram will get Vanish Mode which will delete messages upon closing the conversation window.

Facebook and Instagram are getting Vanish Mode in chats

Vanish Mode is activated with a swipe from the bottom of the chat. Once a message is sent, it will stay on the screen until it is turned off or the app is switched. Of course, you can always screenshot the message before it disappears.

The new feature will work both in group chats and personal conversations. While they are instantly disappearing, Facebook revealed conversations can be reported, meaning they will remain in the system for up to 14 days, so they are not instantly deleted.

Such features aren’t entirely new in the Facebook universe – there still is “Secret Conversation” for Messenger but it is rather tedious to set up and use and nobody has the time for that. Instagram also has something of a disappearing feature – currently, photos can be sent and set up to disappear once seen but nothing on messages unless you Unsend them.

Source: https://www.gsmarena.com/facebook_and_instagram_are_getting_vanish_mode_in_chats-news-46270.php

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