Apps

World Cup 2018: 4 apps to download

Keep tabs on your favorite teams!

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The 2018 World Cup is upon us and if like me, you’ve been having sleepless nights due to severe excitement, I suggest you use that time to get on your phone and download apps. Here are four of the most useful ones to keep you up to date before, during, and after the world’s biggest sporting event.

1. FIFA 

The official FIFA app has been updated to focus on the 2018 World Cup, providing exclusive content and features surrounding the month-long event. When setting up, it will ask you to choose your favorite team, notifications you want to receive, and other teams you want to track. You also get match schedules, standings, live scores, news, and analysis.

2. FOX Sports

FOX Sports won broadcasting rights in the United States this year, making it the exclusive English-language home of the 2018 World Cup. With that comes a special section on the FOX Sports app dedicated to this summer’s hottest event. You won’t run out of content to watch as the network prepared a ton of them including highlights from previous World Cups, predictions, and profiles on players. There is also a dedicated tab for replays in case you can’t catch the games live.

3. Twitter

If you haven’t yet, now is the time to download Twitter and create an account. Not only does seeing live reactions from fans add to all the action happening in the next four weeks, together with FOX Sports, Twitter is also streaming a live show hosted by Rachel Bonnetta straight from Moscow’s Red Square in Russia each match day. That’s 27 shows in total that will provide match previews, recaps, and of course Twitter reactions. Aside from #WorldCup, you can keep tabs on specific matches by using the official hashtags compiled by Twitter here.

4. Bleacher Report

Last but not the least, it may not be an official partner or have exclusive rights to any World Cup content, but Bleacher Report is my go-to for bite-sized, sharable content. Like on the FIFA app, you can select your favorite teams to get curated content, but there’s also a special feed for anything and everything World Cup. You get the epic tweets from @brfootball and other relevant accounts, links to articles, and videos not only from Bleacher Report but from other publications as well.

SEE ALSO: Vivo unwraps X21 World Cup Edition

Apps

Instagram releases IGTV app for creators

Now capable of uploading hour-long videos

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Have you ever wanted to upload a video longer than a minute on Instagram? You’re in for a treat as the photo-sharing company launched its latest product: IGTV!

IGTV comes with a stand-alone app that allows you to watch longer videos from content creators all over the world, and upload your own videos, as well. With IGTV, creators can upload a video up to an hour long. However, keep in mind that the videos have to be vertically oriented when you upload them.

“It’s built for how you actually use your phone,” according to Instagram’s business blog. Of course, newer accounts won’t be able to fully maximize this new feature as IGTV limits the upload time to ten minutes. However, Instagram is working on applying the one-hour limit to everyone in the future.

Much like a TV, IGTV features channels from different content creators from around the world. When you follow a creator on Instagram, you can access their IGTV channel through a button above Stories. Meanwhile, the IGTV app allows you to scroll through a list of channels according to your preferences. The app filters the channels according to who you’re following and the most popular creators on IGTV itself.

Instagram hopes to add more features to IGTV in the future to help content creators. These features range from advertisements in between videos to an option for monetization — something YouTube is doing right now. Instagram wants to give content creators another means to reach their audience while earning revenue from their content, too.

The IGTV app is now available for download from the Google Play Store and Apple App Store for free! Integration with the Instagram app will follow suit once an update arrives.

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Apps

Facebook Messenger will soon autoplay videos in your conversations

Nope, we don’t want videos playing while chatting!

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When using a free service, expect it to have ads. That’s what exactly Facebook is doing to keep their platform free of charges, but they’re running out of room for ads inside their main app, so they’re finding more places to put them. That’s why Messenger, Facebook’s messaging app, started to have ads for quite some time now, and it’s about to get more.

Currently, ads inside Messenger are static and they’re bearable since they don’t necessarily get in the way. As mentioned earlier, Facebook wants to put in more ads in their messaging app. Not just simple ads though, but autoplay videos. Videos are more valuable for the company since they sell higher to advertisers. But, can users deal with videos automatically playing while they’re chatting with friends and family?

Stefanos Loukakos, the one who runs Messenger’s ad business, says he’s aware how autoplay videos would feel intrusive and that the company will monitor user behavior to learn if these new ads turn people off. He did claim in an article by Recode that they’re not yet sure how things will work, but basic ads in Messenger didn’t show any changes with how people used the platform and videos may or may not have the same effect.

Autoplay video ads on Messenger will roll out early next week to select (and unlucky) users.

SEE ALSO: Facebook Messenger’s new interface makes it simple again

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Apps

Android Messages web client goes live and gets new features

Text, images, and stickers are all supported

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Android Messages‘ much-awaited feature is finally available and it’s not the only new thing to try out. Google has five new features for users of Messages, from web support to smart replies.

The web version of Android Messages is now rolling out to users, allowing them to send and view messages on their desktop or laptop’s browsers.

Users may visit messages.android.com to access the Android Messages for web. They must also have the updated app on their phone to pair their browser with their phone. People can send stickers, emoji, and attach images aside from sending simple text messages.

The other new features of Android Messages include nifty smart replies for quick responses, instant preview of a link to an article in the conversation, built-in GIF search capabilities, and a useful shortcut for copying one-time passwords such as verification codes when logging into certain apps.

The new features, according to Google, are slowly becoming available to Android users and the rollout will continue throughout the week.

Source: Google

SEE ALSO: The future of Android messaging gets support from carriers worldwide

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