Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 June 2019

7 game-changing social media and phone updates to know

The world in your pocket evolves constantly, here are some fresh changes to keep in mind

Pinterest is an image search site, where users post and look for pictures that interest them.
Pinterest is an image search site, where users post and look for pictures that interest them.

There is now hope if you type a ­Facebook message you regret, and a big Twitter change might be around the corner.

Facebook Messenger now lets you delete messages within 10 minutes

Fire off a missive on Messenger that you immediately regret? Or spot an autocorrect gaffe that transforms your sentence into gibberish? The good news is that you can now delete a ­Facebook direct message, but you need to do so within 10 minutes.

The process is exactly like WhatsApp – tap and hold the message you want to delete, and choose ‘remove for me’ or ‘remove for everyone’, and the person you have messaged will be left with a notification that you have deleted the message (so you may still be left with some explaining to do.)

The Pinterest 'skin tone' search

Many people scroll through ­Pinterest to find beauty ­inspiration and the photo-sharing app has now created a “skin tone” search to help people find what they need.

“Last year, nearly 60 per cent of the top 100 search terms for skin-­related searches involved a tone, such as dark skin, pale skin, and olive skin, which showed us women of all skin types wanted a way to customise their searches,” Pinterest said in a statement on the update.

So now, when you search “beauty tips”, for instance, you will be able to select from four palettes showing 16 different skin tones (they say there are more to come) so that you can quickly find looks that suit you.

Live streaming on LinkedIn

What LinkedIn Live will look like. Photo: supplied 
What LinkedIn Live will look like. Photo: supplied

The business person’s social media network has launched a live video ­feature – which is still in beta in the US, and will remain invite-only. The video-streaming ability will be a privilege given to a select few at first – most likely to ensure that the videos stay on-brand for LinkedIn. Expect plenty of recordings of conferences, forums, product announcements and more to start popping up on your feed.

New emojis: a falafel emoji – and some for people of determination

New emojis for 2019 represent people with disabilities. Courtesy Emojipedia
New emojis for 2019 represent people with disabilities. Courtesy Emojipedia

From next month, 230 new emojis will land in your phone. These will include a yawning face, a flamingo, a sloth, a skunk, an orangutan, a rickshaw, a Hindu temple and a falafel. Also, there will be new emojis representing people of determination, including ear aids, prosthetic limbs, guide and service dogs, people in wheelchairs, those carrying canes and three new faces representing those with hearing disabilities.

The ‘original tweeter’ tag

Twitter is testing an update that could really help navigate threads: the ­“original tweeter” tag. The grey label appears on the tweets of the person who started a Twitter thread, which helps navigate unwieldy threads, and means it will be clear which is the parody/­scam account on conversations ­started by high-­profile users. It is a little change, but one we welcome. The tag is currently only appearing for some users but, if all goes well, it should be rolled out more widely soon.

The digital wellbeing Android feature that will save us from social media

If you have an Android phone, you will have noticed the look and feel of your phone’s operating system changed ­drastically the last time you updated it – well, this is Android Pie (or version 9). But we’re most excited about an Android Pie update that has hit Google Pixel phones: the ­Digital Wellbeing Dashboard. Following the Screen Time app already on iPhones, this new feature, which we hope will roll out across more phones soon, offers you a quick pie-chart glimpse into how you use your phone, how much time you spend on each app, etc. ­This might just be the “real talk” many of us need to stop ­spending too long mindlessly watching Insta stories. Plus, you can set time limits for some apps.

Something that may be coming soon … quick-fire tweet editing

Twitter chief executive Jack Dorsey was on the Joe Rogan Experience podcast last week, during which Rogan asked Dorsey about editing typos on tweets (and ensuring that people can still see the original).

Jack Dorsey, CEO and co-founder of Twitter and founder and CEO of Square, speaks at the Consensus 2018 blockchain technology conference in New York City, New York, U.S., May 16, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Segar
Jack Dorsey, CEO and co-founder of Twitter and founder and CEO of Square. Photo: Reuters

“We’re looking at exactly that,” he replied. “The reason we don’t have edit in the first place is we were built on SMS, we were built on text messaging. Once you send a text, you can’t take it back. You could build it as such so maybe we introduce a five-second to 30-second delay in the sending. And within that window, you can edit.”

Five seconds? That would be some quickfire editing.

Updated: February 18, 2019 10:11 AM