Twitter hashes out future changes, Microsoft steps away from phones, Siri SDK

We’ve got more details on the changes coming – and not coming – to Twitter. According to a blog post from Senior Product Manager Todd Sherman, future changes will include the ability to attach photos, GIFs, polls and videos without it counting against the 140-character limit. Also, you’ll be able to retweet or “quote tweet” your own old tweets, so you can rebroadcast that smart-ass political remark you made a while back.

What’s going away? The need to do that “period-at-handle” thing in order to show replies to users not following certain other users. Also, adding user handles will not count against the 140 character limit – which, by the way, is one of the things NOT changing about Twitter.

There were rumors that the service was going to change up the character limit, but CEO Jack Dorsey nixed that idea, saying the iconic 140- character message limit was a hallmark of the service.

_____________

The axe is falling at Microsoft’s mobile phone division, with news from C/NET that nearly 2,000 jobs were going away, and that follows the 4,500 job cuts announced just last week.

A lot of those jobs losses will be in Finland at Nokia. Microsoft bought up Nokia mobile phone division in 2014, and despite numerous attempts, just never could gain any traction in the mobile phone marketplace. Redmond will also write off nearly a billion dollars in losses over their failed attempts to go up against Apple and Android.

So is Microsoft totally done with mobile phones? Doesn’t look like it. C-NET says Microsoft may introduce some sort of “mobile devices” next year. And Nokia? Yep, there will be new Nokia phones… but they’ll be running Android.

_____________

Apple was one of the first tech firms to offer an intelligent assistant, whom we now know as the cheeky chatterbox Siri, way back in 2011.

But as fun as Siri is to tease, she – or it – has fallen behind in the face of competing digital bots like Alexa, Cortana, Amazon’s Echo and Viv, who have expanded capabilities, especially when it comes to smart home capabilities. That’s about to change. Apple is now planning to release a Siri development kit for app developers so their tech can run on voice commands and, basically, just do more stuff.

No specific release date has been specified, we’ll likely know more at WWDC next month. The Siri SDK is just another indication that our tech future will be voice controlled as we move away from apps and into a future where out tech listens to what we say – and predicts what we will need.

Mobile

Car-branded phones need to make a U-turn if they ever want to impress

Your car and your smartphone are becoming one, yet smartphones branded or co-created by car companies are a problem. We look at the history, some examples of the best and worst, then share hopes for the future.
Mobile

Apple's iOS 12.1.1 makes it easier to switch cameras in FaceTime

After months of betas, the final version of iOS 12 is here to download. The latest OS comes along with tons of new capabilities, from grouped notifications to Siri Shortcuts. Here are all the features you'll find in iOS 12.
Mobile

On a budget? We found the best affordable smartphones you can buy

Here are the best cheap phones for anyone working with a tight budget, whether you're a fan of stock Android or marathon battery life. Find out what you can get for under $500 or far, far less as we round up the best budget smartphones.
Deals

Save up to $750 with the best smartphone deals for December 2018

Need a better phone but don't want to spend a fortune? It's never a bad time to score a new smartphone and save some cash. We rounded up the best smartphone deals available that can save you as much as $750.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Alexa-enabled Billy Bass, ‘Gear.Club Unlimited 2,’ and more

Alexa-enabled fish and Boring Company lawsuits highlighted this episode of Digital Trends Live. We also welcomed Chris Rosario to talk about Gear.Club Unlimited 2 and Ian Williams of Deadstock Coffee joined the show from Tokyo, Japan.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Harlem Globetrotter Big Easy talks new app, favorite gadget

We welcomed Harlem Globetrotter Nathaniel Lofton to talk about how he became a Globetrotter 14 years ago. Big Easy also told us about the brand-new Harlem Globetrotters app that is now available on Android and Apple.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: First 5G phone, Batcole Foundation, and a new data breach

Tuesday on Digital Trends Live, Greg Nibler discussed trending topics such as the Quora data breach, and Jeremy Kaplan was joined by Katie Linendoll from the Batcole Foundation to discuss the benefits of AR and VR in hospital rooms.
Digital Trends Live

Filmmaker Justin Ching talks about empowering underrepresented voices

Justin Ching, filmmaker and founder of production studio J-school, believes it is important to empower underrepresented communities to tell their own stories. He appeared on Digital Trends Live to talk about his journey and J-school's…
Digital Trends Live

Pro4Ma CEO Liz Dunn explains the retail trends of Black Friday, Cyber Monday

Black Friday is a day of sales, but also of chaos. Pro4MA CEO Liz Dunn appeared on Digital Trends Live to discuss the shifts she has seen in Black Friday weekend, and what they mean for consumers.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Self-driving cars, ocean exploration, and holiday shopping

Today on Digital Trends Live, we discussed the first self-driving car service in Phoenix, an expedition heading to the bottom of the world's oceans, and talked to Liz Dunn from Pro4ma about holiday shopping trends.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Alexa updates, Uber’s self-driving cars, and more

On this episode of Digital Trends Live, Senior Editor Caleb Denison discussed the best streaming devices and we welcomed Danny Pyell and Felia Mano, the Nintendo Power Couple, and Kelly Dachtler from OBVS to the show.
Digital Trends Live

CEO of shoe startup OB/VS talks about exploration-focused footwear

Today we had the founder of OB/VS Kelly Dachtler to talk about why he wanted to start a footwear company, what makes the shoes his firm manufactures unique, and what future products are in store.
Digital Trends Live

HouseSpecial animation team brings DT’s Holiday Gift Guide to life with miniatures

Digital Trends partnered with animation company HouseSpecial to create this year's Holiday Gift Guide. We sat down with art director Gee Staughton to discuss how HouseSpecial brought life to the project.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: The Game Awards recap, smart home hackers, and more

On episode 32 of Digital Trends Live, DT's live morning show, hosts Greg Nibler and Jeremy Kaplan broke down the news of the day, including a recap of The Game Awards, a smart home hacking, and more.