Twitter launches new features - Charlie GriffinTwitter launched two new features during September that enhanced not only functionality of the platform but the ways in which advertisers can operate and deliver to consumers.Firstly, the iconic 140 character limit relaxed slightly as the full 140 can be used for text in addition to images, links, videos, gifs and quoted text. The long awaited change, which was rolled out last month, will undoubtedly change the way in which people can communicate on the platform allowing for much more structured and detail messaging from consumers and brands alike.Secondly, the ability to optimise towards website conversions has been implemented giving Twitter an offering far more in line with more strategic programmatic advertising vendors. This change will allow brands to use Twitter as a means not only to reach consumers with branding messages but also as a direct response tool.Despite nothing confirmed, there continues to be rumours about the sale of the platform to companies such as Salesforce, Google, Verizon and Microsoft, leading to the share price soaring by 13% last month. Ad revenues issues may have previously lead people to believe that the platform was not a key place for advertising, it is however still proving to be a major player in the social media world and given the interest from some big names, arguably has not fallen out of favour with consumers and businesses alike.Snapchat Spectacles: the new Google Glass? - Sharan Cheema
Snapchat made the unexpected move into hardware last month with the announcement of Spectacles.Under the new company umbrella name of Snap Inc, Spectacles becomes their second product and led many early commentators to draw comparisons with Google Glass. The video sunglasses allow users to take snaps and connect directly to Snapchat with Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. The camera lens integrated into each pair is designed to match a human perspective and will add another dimension to the life-casting phenomenon which is now a part of daily life.The product’s aesthetic is fashionable, succeeding where Google failed, appearing to be ideal for the audience they are targeting. A reported price point of $130 makes it an investment but not cost-prohibitive, similar to an entry level Go Pro.The comparisons between both Spectacles and Glass are obvious but not fair. Spectacles has one clear use and is ideal for the twenty something looking to add another dimension to their Snapchat experience.The glasses will roll out later this year in the US with influential Snapchatters expected to be the first to get their hands on the product. Snapchat has well and truly evolved from being perceived as a means to simply sending risqué pics to an influential player in tech and media.