This week in Facebook news


This week Facebook issues a flurry of mobile updates, including some new features to improve Messenger. As for the critically-panned (but much-downloaded) Android apperating system, Home, Facebook finally rolled out an update for the app.

But that’s not it: There have been a handful of other updates Facebook eked out this week – here they are, in case you missed them.

Facebook emjois roll out to everyone

facebook emojis

If you’ve published a status update recently, you’ll have noticed the brand new smiley face button asking how you’re feeling. Now they’ve been rolled out en masse to the desktop and mobile apps, reports Inside Facebook. And when it comes to mobile and mobile messaging, there are even more options. The social network has rolled out the entire set of emjois that you can access by clicking on the smiley face within the smartphone app. 

[Photo via Inside Facebook]

Facebook stickers added to Messenger

facebook stickers

Stickers have been made available in Facebook’s main app inside the in-app messenger, but it’s finally rolling out to Messenger for iOS and Android. A new set of extra stickers called “Skullington” have appeared in the “sticker” store, which are free for now.

Alongside this update to Messenger, there are a few extra new additions. Photo filters make its way to the app but are limited to photos shared in private and group messages. Messenger’s contact info page has been upgraded to parallel Facebook’s main app, and users can now swipe to delete messages.

[Photo via Inside Facebook]

Facebook may acquire GPS navigation app Waze


Israeli publication Calcalist reports that Facebook is in discussions with mobile navigation service Waze and the price of the acquisition may reach $1 billion. Calcalist adds that the deal is currently in the negotiation phase, which means nothing is for certain and it could fall apart or Waze could sell to a higher bidder.

The app tracks its users’ location data via GPS and sources the latest traffic data from its users in real-time, while allowing Waze to track their current location. Should the deal go through, it’s speculated that Facebook will acquire Waze’s data to boost engagement and time spent on its site, quite possibly by ramping up its mapping feature. Of course for an ad-driven company, Gartner research director Brian Blau tells The New York Times that Facebook would use Waze’s data to “deliver contextual advertising” based on user-location.

Bing deepens its relationship with Facebook

bing facebook sidebar

Last year, Microsoft rolled out a social sidebar. Then Bing integrated Quora, which surfaced people you might know or even people who might be experts on the topic you’re searching for. Since then Bing’s social sidebar has undergone a few changes, but the latest adds a Facebook widget that surfaces any relevant Facebook posts from your friends, including the comments, about the topics that you’re searching for. This section in the social sidebar enables users to like or comment on a Facebook post, if you wish.

The point of the feature is to help you get more engaging, or on-the-spot answers from your friends for the things you’re searching for. But if you don’t want to have your Facebook posts paraded around in search results, you can always adjust your privacy settings.

fb friend request1 in 3 teens are Facebook friends with their mother

While it might seem surprising, a large portion of Facebook teens are friends with their  mothers. In fact, based on the study, 1 in 3 teens are friends with their mother and 65 percent of teens initiate the friend request. 20 year-old Facebook users, on the other hand, initiated the request just 40 percent of the time.


Latest Facebook bug exposed up to 6.8 million users’ private photos

An API bug recently left an impact on Facebook users. Though the issue has since been fixed, some of the apps on the platform had a wrongful access to consumers photos for 12 days between September 13 and September 25. 

These parental control apps will help keep your kids' device habits in check

Looking for extra security and monitoring on mobile devices? Take a look at the best parental control apps for limiting time and keeping watch on your child's phone usage and behavior. We have the top options for Android and iOS here.

Walk, run, and stretch with these handy iPhone fitness apps

Working out and getting yourself in shape isn't easy, but it's easier with the right set of apps. These best iPhone fitness apps will help you to track your calories, monitor your sleep, and achieve your fitness goals.
Smart Home

Facebook Portal and Portal+ video-calling devices gain new content and features

Facebook's Portal devices are video smart speakers with Alexa voice assistants built in that allow you to make calls. The 15-inch Portal+ model features a pivoting camera that follows you around the room as you speak.
Social Media

This band owns Twitter, according to list of top accounts and tweets for 2018

What was the biggest buzz on Twitter in 2018? Twitter's 2018 Year in Review highlights the biggest tweets, accounts, and hashtags. The most-tweeted celebrities, movies, TV shows, athletes, politicians and more in Twitter's 2018 trends.
Social Media

What do yodeling and Kylie Jenner have in common? YouTube’s top 2018 videos

In a true nod to the variety found on YouTube, the platform's top 10 list of videos from 2018 range from celebrities to sports, from perfectly tossing a picture frame on the wall to a kid yodeling in aisle 12 at Walmart.
Home Theater

It took Tom Cruise to raise awareness of this troublesome TV setting

Tom Cruise, in an unexpected PSA tweet, asks you to turn off motion interpolation on your TV, but stops short of how to do it. Here's more on the topic, along with links to a guide on how to rid your TV of the dreaded "soap opera effect."

Make a GIF of your favorite YouTube video with these great tools

Making a GIF from a YouTube video is easier today than ever, but choosing the right tool for the job isn't always so simple. In this guide, we'll teach you how to make a GIF from a YouTube video with our two favorite online tools.

Amazon scouted airport locations for its cashier-free Amazon Go stores

Representatives of Amazon Go checkout-free retail stores connected with officials at Los Angeles and San Jose airports in June to discuss the possibility of cashier-free grab-and-go locations in busy terminals.
Social Media

Snapchat facial recognition could soon power a new portrait mode, code suggests

Digging into Snapchat's code suggests a handful of upcoming camera features, including a portrait mode. The feature appears to use facial recognition A.I. to blur the background. The code also suggests an updated camera interface.

Google+ continues to sink with a second massive data breach. Abandon ship now

Google+ was scheduled to shut its doors in August 2019, but the second security breach in only a few months has caused the company to move its plan forward a few months. It might be a good idea to delete your account sooner than later.
Social Media

Walkie-talkie voice messaging finally comes to Instagram

In its latest grab from messaging apps, Instagram now lets you send walkie-talkie style voice messages. Apps such as Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Snapchat, and iMessage have offered the feature for some time.
Social Media

‘YouTube Rewind 2018’ is about to become its most disliked video ever

YouTube is about to achieve a record it really doesn't want — that of "most-disliked video." Yes, its annual recap of featuring popular YouTubers has gone down really badly this year.
Social Media

GIF almost anywhere with Giphy’s new keyboard and sticker maker

We all love GIFs, but not every app supports them. Fortunately, the new Giphy' keyboard brings GIFs to any iOS app that supports multimedia. The update also comes with a new tool for creating animated stickers.