Twitter takes a cue from Instagram and Snapchat with new quick-swipe camera

Twitter wants to make sharing photos and videos just as in the moment as that text tweet. Rolling out over the next few days, Twitter’s new in-app camera gives photos more impact with a unique format and extra tools, compared to the content uploaded later from the camera roll. Think of the updated design as Twitter’s “what’s happening” in pixel form.

The update is designed to help users tweet images as well as videos quickly — a simple swipe towards the left immediately brings up the in-app camera. That eliminates a few steps from the app’s current camera mode, where users have to hit the compose button, then the camera button to bring up the tool.

But Twitter is also setting those in-app images apart from those shot first and shared later. Images shared from the new in-app camera use a colored bar containing the location and caption. Users are prompted to add text to the image with the same “what’s happening” prompt as a text-only tweet. The app will also use location data to suggest tags for events, which could potentially help the increase the image’s exposure for others following the event.

While Twitter is often considered as a microblogging platform, unlike image-centric networks such as Instagram and Snapchat, the network has its own share of images, some reaching viral status. Critics say the design and easy swipe access feels too much like Snapchat and Instagram, but Twitter has always been known for the network’s immediacy, which is the focus of the new in-app camera.

Twitter is launching the feature while trying to stay true to the platform’s roots as a network for sharing what’s happening now. In a tweet announcing the new camera, the platform shared a short video called “how to capture what’s happening,” in a nod to that “what’s happening” that appears in the text box of a new tweet.

Twitter has been rumored to be working on a camera update and finally shared the new feature during the South by Southwest Conference & Festivals in Austin, Texas, on March 13. Anonymous sources last year suggested a camera-focused update that would allow one-tap camera access, though also hinted at the possibility of the app opening straight to the camera, which the update doesn’t do.

Twitter says the camera update will begin rolling out over the next few days.

Product Review

Oppo's RX17 Pro is a good smartphone up against great competitors

The Oppo RX17 Pro looks great, and has a triple-lens camera on the back; but don’t let these aspects make you rush out and buy one, especially with the masses of excellent devices that are vying for your attention.

What are mirrorless cameras and are they better than DSLR cameras?

What exactly is a mirrorless camera, and what makes them so special? In this article, we break down the specifics of mirrorless cameras, including how they differ from the likes of a DSLR camera, and what kind of pros and cons are.

The Commerce Department implements a temporary reprieve to Huawei

Google has severed most of its partnerships with Huawei, after its addition to the "Entity List" of the U.S. Department of Commerce. Future Huawei devices will lose access to the Google Play Store, Chrome, and Android updates.
Social Media

Save me: How to download Instagram photos from any device

Browsing photos in Instagram is one thing, but saving them is another. Until recently, it wasn't easy to get your pics and data off the 'gram and saved elsewhere, but now you can download Instagram photos with just a few clicks.
Social Media

Twitter sorry for mistakenly storing and sharing some users’ location data

Twitter has revealed that a bug led to it accidentally storing and sharing location data for a number of iOS users. The issue, which has now been fixed, affected those operating more than one Twitter account from the app.

Photographer sues Ariana Grande after she posts his images of her on Instagram

A professional photographer is suing Ariana Grande after she posted photos on Instagram that he'd taken of her. Grande used the post to promote one of her albums, but the photographer says she used the photos without permission.
Social Media

Instagram ditches plans for stand-alone Direct messaging app

Instagram is shuttering it's stand-alone messaging app, Direct, after testing it since 2017. While the messaging features remain intact inside Instagram, the separate app will be discontinued in the next few weeks.
Social Media

6 easy ways to archive all of your favorite Instagram videos

Saving Instagram videos should be just as easy as taking a screenshot. So, we've put together a list of the best apps and tools that save your favorite Instagram videos onto your phone or computer.
Social Media

Instagram’s new Explore grid tempts you to open your wallet

Instagram has made some changes to its Explore tab that might tempt you into the occasional shopping spree. It's also planning to add Stories to the grid, mixing them up with the existing photos and videos.
Social Media

Be the master of your own Insta-verse with multiple Instagram accounts

Whether you own a small business or have separate Instagram accounts for your five cats, we'll walk you through the process of switching between your multiple accounts on your Apple or Android devices.
Social Media

A fond farewell to Grumpy Cat, the internet’s most famous feline

The worst day ever. We say farewell and offer a fond remembrance for Grumpy Cat, the internet's most famous frowning feline, meme and a genuine sweetheart, who died at the age of seven. Exceptionally even tempered and tolerant, Grumpy Cat…

Treat yo' selfie with one of these 13 apps made to beautify your pics

Selfies might be a phenomenon second only to karaoke, but they're not the easiest thing in the world to create. Thankfully, these awesome selfie apps for Android and iOS will make beautifying your self-portraits easier than capturing them.

Creators of WhatsApp attack software face lawsuit from Amnesty International

This week a spyware attack was launched on WhatsApp. Now the Israeli firm linked to that attack is facing a lawsuit from human rights NGO Amnesty International, alleging their software has been used to surveil human rights defenders.

New York could dish out fines for texting while crossing the street

Do you text on your phone while crossing the street? The dangers of stepping out in front of a car or bus are obvious, but in New York, offenders could soon face a fine of as much as $250, too.