May 13, 2013
YouTube launches paid for channels
Would you pay to watch videos from your favourite YouTube channels? The idea of paying for something that was once free rarely receives a positive reception from users, but if paid subscriptions meant fewer ads and a higher quality of content then maybe it is the way forward for YouTube Channels.
Google has confirmed that there are 53 pilot channels to choose from at launch, from National Geographic for Kids, PGA Digital Golf Academy and Recipe.tv. The channels can be accessed for free for a two week trial period and then prices will start at $0.99 / 64p a month, with the option for yearly subscriptions.
By having paid for channels, the creators behind them will be better positioned to generate revenue from their content. This move will also allow Google to compete with the likes of Netflix and LoveFilm.
Nokia teases next Lumia Smartphone
If you missed the teaser for Nokia’s new smartphone in the ad break between The Inbetweeners movie last night on Channel 4 – watch it here. The new smartphone will be launched tomorrow night at Nokia’s press event in London, so check back here on Wednesday for info on the big reveal!
The perfect gadget for tech-savvy parents – a device that is attached to nappies and alerts the parents when they need to change their child’s nappy. The ‘TweetPee’ attachment has a sensor that recognises when there is an increase in humidity and will automatically fire out a tweet to the parent’s twitter alerting them. The useful add-on is that ‘the tweet is also connected to a mobile app that keeps track of the number of diapers used, so that parents can make sure they are always ‘in-stock’ and they can even order online the new packs whenever they are needed’. It is a great idea; however perhaps it is not healthy for a baby to have a transmitting device attached to their tummy.
Chelsea Flower Show showcasing Tweet-controlled garden
Twitter continues to turn up in the most unexpected places. In this instance, The Chelsea Flower Show will be showcasing ‘Digital Capabilities’ which is a garden that has two zones separated by panel walls which are connected to a computer. The panels will open or close dependent on the volume of tweets which use the hashtag #rhschelsea. This is a great way of showcasing our convergent offline and online worlds.
Wind-Up Chair charges iPhone
The creation was revealed at Milan Design week; a clever chair that has a wind up key on the back to charge your iPhone. It would definitely be useful in the office, although they don’t look too comfortable.
May 6, 2013
Littlewoods monetises Facebook with Isobar’s SeeItShop
Littlewoods has claimed to be the first retailer to monetise Facebook, using Isobar’s e-commerce tool for Facebook, SeeItShop, to launch its Myleene Klass swimwear range.
Retailers can monetise through Facebook fans by showcasing collections of products within a single post, allowing Facebook users to browse through brand collections, share individual items, share SeeItShopIt with friends and go directly through to purchase. Littlewoods has said it plans continue to use SeeItShop to bring ten new collections to its Facebook fan base throughout May and June.
British retailer’s partner with PayPal for mobile wallet
PayPal has partnered with 20 of the top British retailers to integrate their new electronic wallet, which will enable customers to pay directly from their smartphone, instead of having to pay with cash or card. It follows the trends set by the likes of Starbucks and Pizza Express, who allow their customers to pay for goods on their Smartphones before they even enter the premises (for instance, ordering a coffee and skipping the queue, or booking a table on the way to the restaurant). PayPal is ensuring that the mobile wallet will be compatible with 90% of UK retailers. It will be interesting to see if this will bring a change in British consumer behaviour, by making it accessible in the majority of high street stores and restaurants.
Auto Trader closes print to continue its Digital first strategy
Auto Trader is due to release its last print issue next month after 36 years due to a drop in print sales. Trader Media Group will continue with its digital first strategy and build on its mobile success. Mobile traffic has grown by 67% and tablet traffic has increased by 130% year on year. ‘Auto Trader website traffic has also grown 13 per cent year on year, generating 11m monthly unique visitors’. On the 28thJune the last print issue will be released – Auto Trader are running a competition for users to generate their own front cover for the last printed edition, choosing a car from their favourite decade. Watch this space.
Facebook to Unveil Video Advertising
Facebook is set to unveil video advertising in newsfeeds from July, with the videos playing automatically without sound, providing users with the option of activating audio at which point the video will restart from the beginning.
The move by the social networking site is a bid to tap into the vast budgets that marketers spend on television that tower over online ad spending. It is also an attempt to capitalise on the rapid growth of online video advertising as global brands follow users from the TV to the internet. To put it into context, based on the initial inventory available on Facebook, the new online video ads could generate up to $1.5m of new revenues a day, compared to the first three months of this year, in which Facebook generated revenues of $1.46bn. It will be interesting to see how the new video ads affect user experience. Read more here.
Instagram’s ‘Photos of You’
Instagram has launched the ability to tag people in photos. You can tag people or brands in your Instagram photoss, attaching a username to a face. When someone tags you in a photo, you’ll get a notification in the app and the picture will automatically show up in your “Photos of You” section inside Instagram. If you’re wary of photos being shared within the Instagram community, you can adjust your privacy settings accordingly and set the feature to not show pictures automatically, but instead require approval for each tag that pops up, you promiscuous party animal, you.
Apple releases list of Top 25 app downloads
Apple has recently released its top 25 paid for iPhone apps where interestingly, mobile games dominate. How many do you regularly use?
1. Angry Birds
2. Fruit Ninja
3. Doodle Jump
4. Cut the Rope
5. Angry Birds Seasons
8. Words With Friends
9. Tiny Wings
10. Angry Birds Space
11. Pocket God
12. Plants vs. Zombies
13. The Game of Life
14. The Omoron Test
15. Where’s My Water?
16. Draw Something (Premium)
18. Angry Birds Star Wars
19. MotionX GPS Drive
23. Minecraft – Pocket Edition
24. Color Splash
25. The Sims 3
April 29, 2013
Water is life has developed a smart integrated campaign to guilt people into donating money to solve real world, life threatening problems rather than complaining about our trivial #firstworldproblems.
Water is Life successfully attempted to ‘reverse-trend’ the hashtag, by ending it rather than promoting it. By gathering #firstworldproblems tweets and getting individuals in Haiti to recite them, the charity creates a powerful realisation at how insensitive this hashtag is. To further resonate this, the charity sent personalised video responses from those in Haiti to each tweeter using the #firstworldproblems hashtags to apologise for their problem, for example, “Hi, I’m sorry your son didn’t get a toy in his McDonald’s Happy Meal’.
Water is life were able to change the conversation, instead of complaining about #firstworldproblems, people began using the hashtag as a vehicle for getting donations. Watch the hashtag killer case study video below.
Using Gamification to help Cancer Patients
HopeLab has relaunched its ‘games for health’, which help kids deal with having cancer. More than five years in the making, Re-Mission 2 consists of six free-to-play online mini-games that combine fun and cancer education. The game allows kids to go inside the body to defeat cancer with weapons like chemotherapy, antibiotics, and the body’s immune cells. The action has direct parallels to real-world cancer treatments, and it tells patients that one of the big reasons that kids don’t survive cancer is because they don’t stick to their treatments.
iTunes 10th Birthday
On 28 April 2003, Steve Jobs revealed iTunes, the revolutionary digital music store offering 79p song downloads. Read more here. Since then we’ve seen a whole host of music offering services, from Spotify, Nokia Music and the latest Twitter Music.
Tribeca Film Festival uses Vine
Tribeca Film Festival challenged people to create six-second films using Twitter’s Vine app. After narrowing the field of 400 submissions to 40 earlier this month, judges for this #6SecFilms contest announced the winners this weekend. Entries had to have a beginning, middle and end. The contest was divided into four categories: auteur, animate, genre and series. Click here to see the winners.
Twitter introduces #keyword targeting for advertisers
Twitter has announced that it will be rolling out keyword targeting as a part of its ad platform, in a bid to allow advertisers far higher rates of engagement. Through running geotargeted campaigns using keywords, advertisers will be able to target ads based on what Twitter users are saying in their tweets. Read more from the Twitter blog here.
Tumblr releases ads on Mobile app
Last week, Tumblr released promoted posts firstly on mobile and then desktop. For the first time in six years, ads will be in the same format as Tumblr posts, occasionally appearing in your feed as you scroll through.
The first advertisers who have tried Tumblr’s ads are Warners Bros, ABC Entertainment, ABC Family, GE and Pepsi. Warner Bros has used the platform to release teasers for two of their films ‘The Great Gatsby’ and ‘The Hangover Part III’, seeing thousands of reposts. ‘The decision to roll out ads in the mobile stream underscores just how quickly the mobile ad market is growing’.
Burn your number after a questionable date
A new app on the appstore offers users the ability to have a disposable number – if you have ever needed a phone number for a day, a week or a month for contacting someone, but you don’t want them to have a record of your number forever, this is the app for you.
This app generates a number for you in 30 seconds that you can give out without ‘the fear of having your real phone number compromised’. When you no longer have a need for the number, you can simply ‘burn’ the number on the app. And so you will never be contacted on that number again. Perfect for if you go on a blind date and they don’t turn out to be the ‘perfect match’.
Fun for Monday. The Evian Babys are back. Watch the TVC below which has had nearly 41m views on YouTube in a 10day period. Impressive.
March 27, 2013
A few weeks ago Google revealed that they were seeking Explorers to help shape the future of Glass. They asked people across Google+ and Twitter to tell them what they would do #ifihadglass . Google are releasing the results of the ‘chosen ones’ soon, so I thought I’d take a look at some of the entries to the #ifihadglass Google Glass contest.