Snapchat blocks Al Jazeera on its app in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia has requested Snapchat to block access to Al Jazeera’s content within its country. Al Jazeera’s news articles and videos now cannot be viewed on the app’s Discover feature.

Saudi Arabia told Snap Incorporated, that the Al Jazeera Discover Publisher Channel violated local laws. Al Jazeera’s Arabic language channel on Snapchat Discover had been available since May 2017.

On September 17, 2017 a Snapchat spokesperson in a statement said, “We make an effort to comply with local laws in the countries where we operate.”

Saudi Arabia has one of the largest users for Snapchat nearing eight million. While Al Jazeera is a state funded media company of Qatar, which has been the subject of a boycott by many of the Gulf countries. The boycott was incidentally led by Saudi Arabia. One of the specific complaints against Qatar to justify the boycott was the use of Al Jazeera by the country.

Wall Street Journal was the first to report on the decision to remove the channel. According to Wall Street Journal, ‘the conflict is the latest example of a technology company being pinned in the crosshairs of geopolitics as it navigates censorship of content on its platforms.’

Sources: Al Jazeera, CNBC

 

Whatsapp comes up with status story version copying Snapchat

WhatsApp came up with with its own version of 24-hour story copying the trend set by Snapchat in the form of Status.  Facebook recently owned WhatsApp and now it has and updated feature for the status. Instead of posting a short status, like “in the gym, at school”, one can post a picture or video that will be up for 24 hours on your profile. This feature was recently added in Instagram.

A unique elements added to this WhatsApp’s version of Stories is GIFs. Also all the status updates are end-to-end encrypted which gives a security stability to the updates. Another improves feature is of the videos which can be of 45 seconds, overpowering the 10 seconds videos on other platforms.

To remind, Whatsapp works on address book, therefore your status is visible to your Whatsapp contacts and there aren’t any followers. But undoubtedly the concept remains the same.

In  the past six months, Whatsapp has added features of almost all social media applications like video call of Skype, voice call like Viber, sending documents like Xender and many more features from Facebook.

The 24 hour status story update feature is available from Monday to the WhatsApp users of Netherlands and France. Later in the week it will begin in U.K., Spain, Italy, Israel and Saudi Arabia. Indian ‘WhatsAppers’ still need to wait for the updated version.

Source: India Today, DNA

Image Source: Representational image from Yourstory.com

Disney to Create Shows for Snapchat

Disney recently announced that the Walt Disney Company’s US television arm will make shows for Snap Inc’s Snapchat. Snap along with preparing for next year’s initial public offering, has signed various content and advertising agreements with Time Warner Inc’s Turner Broadcasting System Inc, Comcast’s NBC Universal and Viacom.

Snapchat partners with media companies such as Disney in an attempt to attract younger viewers, which increasingly eschew traditional television. These two companies have worked together in the past for a special “Live Stories”, a Snapchat feature that curates photos and videos submitted by the users in context to a specific event, ABC’s broadcast of Academy Awards in February.

All the control regarding selling of advertisements for the shows will be supervised by Disney unlike prior deals made by Snapchat where both the companies had an equal hand.

The Disney-ABC Television Group agreement begins in January with a series around ABC’s very popular “The Bachelor”. Snapchat will later showcase future shows based on other ABC-Disney properties.

In an interview Disney-ABC Television executive John Frelinghuysen said “Earlier this year, we worked closely with Snap on a very successful The Oscars Live Story and we look forward to building on that relationship and providing Snapchat’s mobile-centric users with a unique, immersive experience around our shows and brands.”

 

Sources : Venture Beat, NDTV

Snapchat to snap: Software to Hardware: Is it really required?

Snapchat is developing from more than an application to something bigger. With around 310 million monthly clients, Snapchat is as of now at a high platform with regards to long range informal communication. Discussing the change, for one thing, the organization has rebranded itself as Snap Inc. The organization, now Snap, has declared the dispatch of its new item, called Spectacles, which looks truly cool, as well as accompanies a much cooler component and reason. Adhering to its saying of keeping your recollections alive in snaps and recordings, Spectacles are not your regular shades. One can record recordings utilizing Spectacles, with only a tap of the catch. The sunglasses, dubbed Spectacles, will be sold via limited distribution for about $130, said Spiegel, who described the device as a toy.
The first hardware to be sold by Snap, the sunglasses will record video from the user’s perspective in 10-second increments that can be synched with his or her smart-phone.

To quickly describe the basics, a video of Snapchat’s new camcorder shades leaked on saturday. Business Insider reported it, so the organization hurried out the news with a Wall Street Journal piece that was getting ready for Monday.They’ll be one-size-fits all in dark, greenish blue, or coral hues. Displays let you tap the glasses’ edge to in a flash record 10 seconds of video, three taps to record a most extreme of 30 seconds, with a light on the front cautioning individuals you’re recording. The video is caught with a 115-degree wide view focal point in a roundabout configuration that can be observed full-screen on a telephone in any introduction. The video is put away on the gadget and can be remotely offloaded to a telephone over Wifi or Bluetooth so clients can alter and share by means of Snapchat later. Displays’ battery ought to last for a day, and you can get up to four full charges from the versatile charging case. Yet, the genuine inquiries are whether individuals will need or need Spectacles when they as of now have a camera telephone, how Snap Inc can dodge them getting to be quirky or unpleasant, and how they may change the eventual fate of the start-up and how we catch online networking.

Content Sources: http://www.bgr.in/news/snapchat-rebrands-as-snap-launches-spectacles-video-recording-glasses-heres-everything-you-need-to-know/

http://www.wsj.com/articles/snapchat-releases-first-hardware-product-spectacles-1474682719

 

 

Social networking giant Twitter registers slowest revenue growth

As per a report in the Economic Times, media giant Twitter Inc reported its slowest revenue growth since 2013, when it went public. 

Amidst stagnant user growth and lack of funds from the advertising medium, co-founder and CEO Jack Dorsey returned to the company a year back. However, despite his return, the company’s second quarter revenue didn’t match up to Wall Street estimates, and the forecast for current quarter didn’t even reach the average analysts estimate of $678.18 million. 
The company was able to hardly achieve a one percent increase in its user base from 310 million in the first quarter to 313 million in the second one.
Moreover, the company reportedly laid out a long-term strategy earlier this year focusing on the five areas of core service, live-streaming video, the site’s “creators and influencers,” safety, and developers.
Reportedly, special focus is being given to live video and streaming within the company. Specials deals have been signed with the Major League Baseball and NBA in the same regard.
Apart from this, the company has managed to reduce its net loss from $136.7 million last year to $107.2 million this year, and its revenue has increased by about 20 percent. But it is still missing the estimate of $606.8 million.