All the Facebook news you may have missed this week

Welcome to Facebook

Another week has passed and as per usual, Facebook pushed plenty of updates and made its fair share of headlines — including its new mobile Share button, a Pages-only News Feed, and the expansion of its Gifts service. But as there’s always more Facebook news to be had, so here are five more stories you may have missed over the week.

Facebook Emoticons now available for iOS

Facebook emoticons

Emoticons add some personality to our text-filled conversations, and Facebook continues to experiment here. With the many messaging apps out there already boasting variations of smiley faces, Facebook is finally opening up access to its slate of 52 emoticons to mobile devices. As we reported last month, Facebook enabled emoticons for its desktop app, but not for its mobile apps. But fear not: Facebook is now supporting the feature as part of the iOS update. The emoticons can be found when you press the plus icon. We did notice, however, that many on the list of supported Facebook emoticons for the desktop were not the same as the emoticons offered on its mobile app.

Facebook enables tagging from your iPhone

facebook ios tagging

An additional feature, announced alongside the emoticon and share update for mobile devices, is tagging. This is another tool that exists for desktop but hasn’t been available for your mobile apps, but now you can tag friends in posts and comments directly from your smartphone. Usually when there’s a post that you’d like to bring to your friends’ attention, for instance you might be bringing a news article to their attention, tagging them with the @ symbol notifies them that they’ve been tagged in a post. The update is also only available for iOS at the moment. 

Facebook lock up expires and shares jump

773 million Facebook shares were expected to flood the market as the lockup expired and early investors and employees become able to cash in on their shares. Wall Street presumed that Facebook’s market cap was expected to fall since shares were freed up, but it appears that with unanticipated consumer confidence in the social network, share prices have soared more than 17 percent to $23.42 at the time of this writing. Despite the jump, Facebook shares are still more than 39 percent lower than the original $38/share IPO price.

Facebook’s “conversion measurement” advertising tool

On Friday, Reuters reported that Facebook was launching a new conversion measurement tool that has been long requested by its advertisers. The tool will enable advertisers to track the performance of an ad even a week after a user has viewed the advertisement. “It lets marketers track the impact of a Facebook ad hours or days or even a week beyond when someone might have viewed the ad. That allows marketers to understand the impact of the Facebook ad on the ultimate purchase,” Debra Aho Williamson, an analyst at eMarketer told Reuters. The tool will only show the number of people who have made a purchase, according to Facebook product manager, David Base. Personally identifiable information will be inconsequential since users will just show up as a statistic in a broader analytic that displays how well an ad is performing., a beta tester of the service, claims to have reduced its cost per new customer acquisition by a whopping 39 percent. According to Reuters, Fab was able to identify the groups of users more likely to make a purchase and served the ads to these individuals using Facebook’s conversion tool.

Facebook app alerts for developers

facebook dev alerts

Facebook app developers out there might want to pay attention to this. Facebook announced that it is rolling out developer alerts beginning on November 16 and will notify developers of any new information regarding feature or policy changes to a their apps. The types of alerts that fall under this update are as follows as explained by Facebook software engineer, Min-Young Wu:

  1. Breaking changes. If your app is using functionality that we’re changing or removing, you will be sent an alert at least 90 days before the change goes into effect. As a courtesy, we’ll also send reminders at 60, 30, and 0 days. Once you’ve enabled the respective migration, we will no longer send you alerts.
  2. App status changes. If you have submitted Open Graph actions or created an app detail page for App Center, we will use Developer Alerts to notify you when the status of your submission changes. For example, we will send an alert when your Open Graph actions are approved.
  3. Policy violations and enforcement. If your app doesn’t adhere to our Platform Policies you will be notified through these alerts. For example, if your app does not list a privacy policy, you will receive an alert telling you to add one before your app is forced into sandbox mode.

Lyft’s Shared Saver service offers cheaper rides, but you’ll have to walk a little

Lyft has launched a new ride option called Shared Saver that offers cheaper rides if you're willing to walk a little. Shared Saver designates a nearby pick-up point and drops you off a short distance from your final destination.

Stay fit and save cash with our top 10 affordable Fitbit alternatives

As much as we love Fitbits, they're rather expensive. If all you want is a simple activity tracker, however, then check out these great cheap Fitbit alternatives. With offerings from brands like Garmin, you don't need to pay full price.

Microsoft extension adds Google Chrome support for Windows Timeline

The Windows Timeline feature is now much more versatile thanks to the added support for Google's Chrome browser. All you need to do to increase its functionality is to download the official Chrome extension.

Reluctant to give your email address away? Here's how to make a disposable one

Want to sign up for a service without the risk of flooding your inbox with copious amounts of spam and unwanted email? You might want to consider using disposable email addresses via one of these handy services.
Social Media

Periscope tool adds guests to feeds so streamers can become talk show hosts

Periscope users can now invite viewers to chime into the conversation with more than just the comment tool. By enabling the option to add guests, livestreamers can add guests to the conversation, in audio format only.

Crouching, climbing, and creeping, the perfect Instagram shot knows no bounds

Just how far will you go for the perfect Instagram? A recent survey shows just how willing Instagram users -- and Instagram husbands -- are to climb, lie down, embarrass themselves or let their food go cold for the perfect shot.
Social Media

Facebook’s long-promised ‘unsend’ feature arrives. Here’s how to use it

Send a message to the wrong person? Messenger now gives you 10 minutes to take it back. After an update beginning to roll out today, users can now retract messages if they act within the first 10 minutes after sending the message.
Social Media

YouTube boss admits even her own kids gave the ‘Rewind’ video a thumbs down

YouTube's 2018 Rewind video went down like a lead balloon at the end of last year, becoming the most disliked video in its history. And now YouTube's CEO has admitted that even her own kids thought it was pretty darn awful.
Social Media

Snapchat finally recovers from its redesign — so here comes an Android update

Snapchat's drop in users after launching a controversial redesign has finally stagnated. During the fourth quarter and 2018 earnings report, Snapchat shared that the company is rolling out an Android update designed to increase performance.
Social Media

Skype’s new ‘blur background’ feature could help keep you from blushing

Skype's latest feature for desktop lets you blur your background during video calls. The idea is that it keeps you as the focus instead of distracting others with whatever embarrassing things you might have on show behind you.
Social Media

Twitter users are declining but more people are seeing ads every day

Twitter's end-of-the-year report for 2018 is a mix of good and bad news. The good news is that more users are seeing adds daily, the metric the company will focus on moving forward. But the bad news is that monthly active users are…

Switch up your Reddit routine with these interesting, inspiring, and zany subs

So you've just joined the wonderful world of Reddit and want to explore it. With so many subreddits, however, navigating the "front page of the internet" can be daunting. Here are some of the best subreddits to get you started.

YouTube beats Apple, Netflix as the most trusted brand by millennials

The popular video sharing website YouTube climbed up in an annual Mblm study, moving up from third place in 2018 and coming ahead of both Apple and Netflix in final 2019 rankings. 
Social Media

LinkedIn finally gets around to launching its own live video tool

Live video is coming to LinkedIn for businesses and individuals on the site. The livestreaming feature is launching in beta in the U.S. before rolling out to the entire community.