Apps

Snapchat adds feature that BeReal made popular

Available in different flavors

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BeReal has quietly started a revolution in the social media world. Since exploding from seemingly nowhere, the fledgling social media platform has sparked new features and copycats in rivaling platforms. Instagram, for example, is experimenting with the exact concept that made BeReal famous. Now, Snapchat is joining the fray and adding dual camera recording to the app.

For the uninitiated, BeReal’s concept is fairly simple. At randomly determined times of the day, the app prompts users to take a dual camera photo — a photo that simultaneously uses the front and back camera — of their surroundings. Its main goal is to encourage authenticity in a world fixated on likes and followers. Unfortunately, authenticity is marketable.

Now, dual camera recording isn’t a new concept. However, today’s rise in popularity owes a great deal to BeReal’s simple concept. Separating from the previously announced Director Mode, Snapchat is now offering the feature as a standalone on the main app.

Users can take shots in three variations: a side-by-side shot using the two cameras, a cutout, or a bigger-and-smaller mode wherein the front-facing shot is a little bubble on the side of the screen. It’s a simple enough concept that opens up a world of creation for users.

The feature is available now on iOS devices for the iPhone XS and later models.

On the other hand, Instagram is also working on its own version of BeReal. In a recent experiment called Candid Challenges, the photo-sharing platform now also prompts users to take the same photos at random intervals during the day.

SEE ALSO: Snapchat officially launches Snapchat Plus

Apps

Twitter now allows mixing videos, photos, and GIFs in one tweet

A more creative way to post

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Twitter India

Throughout the years, we’ve seen how Twitter has evolved, from having a lengthier character limit to replacing squares with circles in its overall page and app layouts.

Now, the popular networking site has come up with a new update which will allow users to post videos, photos, and GIFs all in one tweet.

This change has been tested in the last few months with popular creator and brand accounts across the sports, music, and entertainment industries.

Here are some examples:


Starting today, all users on the platform may now be able to take advantage of the ability to mix different media in a single tweet.

There will still be a maximum of four media in one tweet, but the change definitely gives users more room for creativity in their posts to standout and be more engaging.

Judging from the examples above, the posts kind of mimic Instagram content; it might lessen the need for Twitter threads too.

SEE ALSO: Twitter’s edit button is for paying users only

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Instagram will start to put ads on a user’s profile

And on the Explore page

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Ads are everywhere. Several platforms are testing where and how much they can put without raising a lot of fuss from their users. On a few occasions, a platform can cross the line, prompting a wave of reprisals. Instagram, for example, backtracked on a controversial decision to pump out more recommended posts and ads after massive backlash. Despite the recency of the controversy, Instagram is back again with another ad-fueled decision: ads on user profiles.

This week, Meta announced that two more types of ads are coming to Instagram. The first type is a natural extension of what the platform already has. Instead of hiding video ads deep within the Explore section, these short videos will start popping up right on the section’s landing page. Since the section already has ads, it might not be as intrusive, especially when compared to the second type.

Besides a new spot in the Explore feed, Instagram is also adding ads to a user’s profile. Likely to a lot of users’ dismay, it is what it says on the tin. Offering some consolation, the platform won’t spoil a profile’s grid with an ad. Instead, when a user clicks on a post on the profile, the vertical feed, which usually shows a timeline of the profile’s content, will contain spots for ads.

Instagram has not officially confirmed which users will get the feature. However, the company is currently testing it for select creators. It also assures users that it will come only on public profiles, not private individuals.

SEE ALSO: You can snooze recommended posts on Instagram

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YouTube might ask users to pay to watch in 4K

In testing phase

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Despite offering a mostly free service, YouTube is finding new ways to monetize parts of its platform. Now, ads are a lot more prevalent while watching videos. A less popular way is gating some features behind the platform’s YouTube Premium banner. YouTube is trying it once again, though. The platform is currently testing whether to keep 4K viewing behind a paywall.

With the capabilities of displays today, YouTube and its creators can offer content in stunning 4K resolution. Though not everyone can enjoy the feature, 4K viewing was a welcome one.

However, as spotted by some users on social media (via TechCrunch), the video-sharing site is reportedly making the viewing option exclusive for Premium users. The company has not officially announced any change yet. However, YouTube’s other accounts on Twitter replied to some concerned users on the site, citing an “experiment” to test what works for Premium and non-Premium users.

The company is still gathering responses to the experiment. However, if the initial social media response is any indication, a good chunk of YouTube’s users isn’t pleased with having to pay more to enjoy high-quality content.

Currently, YouTube Premium comes at US$ 11.99 per month for interested customers. The paid subscription offers ad-free viewing and offline viewing. If the company sees some progress with the experiment, they might ad 4K viewing to Premium’s mix.

SEE ALSO: YouTube has quietly launched a Podcasts hub

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