messaging

Twitter may copy Facebook, make features into apps

Twitter may copy Facebook, make features into apps

Some like to poke fun at Facebook for making several impressions on our devices. We’ve got Messenger, Instagram, Facebook, Paper (for iPhone users, at least), WhatsApp — it’s a lot. At their “Analyst Day” soiree, Twitter is teasing that they may do just the same. Executives at Twitter told analysts they were working on improving their direct messaging service, and were very high “applications that can live outside of Twitter”. The microblogging platform may also get a “best of” feature to show you what cool things you might have missed, and will get some interesting video features.

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Google Search now looks in your apps; Messenger hits Play Store

Google Search now looks in your apps; Messenger hits Play Store

It’s update Wednesday, and you know what that means, Android fans: more Google for your Android! On top of the Nexus 6 rollout Google is doing each Wednesday, we also get our hands on some new app features, and sometimes new apps altogether. Today, we’re seeing both, as a really nice update to Google Search is rolling out, and Google’s newest messaging app is also being introduced to the Play Store. For the majority of Android users, both will be available, too.

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Google Voice, Hangouts get SMS/MMS, Verizon support

Google Voice, Hangouts get SMS/MMS, Verizon support

Still using google Voice? There’s good news today, especially if you are on Verizon, or regularly chat with someone who is. An update to Voice adds native MMS support on Verizon, bringing MMS to all four major carriers in the US. Additionally, Voice is also getting native MMS support for photo messaging, so you can send and receive messages from anywhere, via any carrier. Though we’re not out of the multiple-platform woods yet, an update to Voice does have some cross-app functionality.

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Facebook Messenger’s Inevitable Takeover

Facebook Messenger’s Inevitable Takeover

Back in August, Facebook messenger became obligatory. I ran a column called Yes, you DO want Facebook Messenger that many Facebook users were shockingly opposed to. But it's been barely 3 months and Facebook has already announced it: they've reached a tipping point. They already have 500 million users using - not just having downloaded - using Messenger each month. They're aiming to prove that because you do not pay money to use Facebook, you are the product - you don't have a choice in the matter. You need to download that app.

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Praise be! Apple fixes iMessage’s biggest snafu

Praise be! Apple fixes iMessage’s biggest snafu

Apple is addressing the iMessage bug that has caused confusion and annoyance - not to mention prompted a lawsuit - for ex-iPhone users, launching a simple tool to deregister a number from the messaging service. The new support page, quietly added to Apple's site, answers one of the biggest complaints those switching away from an iPhone often have about the process: that their cellphone number remains associated with the Cupertino firm's SMS-bypassing system and so future texts don't make it to their new handset, Android or otherwise.

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Zuckerberg answers biggest Facebook Messenger question: Why?

Zuckerberg answers biggest Facebook Messenger question: Why?

Facebook has made many changes to both its web experience and its mobile apps, and a good number of them have never been popular. The latest debacle that the social networking giant has found itself in is about the forced move to a separate independent app for messaging. The company has just recently conducted its first public town hall Q&A, with Mark Zuckerberg taking the mic. And surely enough, the first question thrown at him, said to be the most popular one, is why on earth did Facebook force this change on them.

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BBM’s new Snapchat-like features rolling out now

BBM’s new Snapchat-like features rolling out now

Once Blackberry made BBM available to other platforms, the rush to check out an old favorite was on. We all ran to download the “new” app, find a friend, and revisit old times. Sadly, BBM was pretty much as we all remembered it; a straight-up chat platform. Today, Blackberry is introducing a few features to BBM designed to make their service stand out. Timed messages, message retraction, and HD picture transfer dominate the list, but will it finally get you to use BBM again?

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Rooms v. Room: Facebook accused of stealing

Rooms v. Room: Facebook accused of stealing

Have you tried Facebook’s latest app, ‘Rooms’? There seems to be a bit of turmoil about it, as a competing app claims Facebook pinched quite a bit of what Rooms is from their app, the similarly named Room. The team behind Room claims they weren’t working with Facebook, either, suggesting Facebook possibly heard about Room via a third-party, like a Venture Capital firm. However Rooms came to resemble Room, their CTO and Co-founder is none too pleased, and is suggesting his company may take legal action.

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Blackberry’s BBM learns from Snapchat, adds vanishing/retractable messages

Blackberry’s BBM learns from Snapchat, adds vanishing/retractable messages

In an effort to remain relevant among the number of chatting apps on people's smartphones today, Blackberry is overhauling its messaging service, BBM, with several new features that are clearly inspired by the popular Snapchat. While currently still in beta, the new update coming soon will introduce disappearing messages on a timer, as well as the ability to retract messages even after they're sent from your phone.

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Whisper found to be tracking users, sharing info

Whisper found to be tracking users, sharing info

You’d think an anonymous app would let you be, well, anonymous. Whisper, which promises users they’re safe from things like being known, have come under fire today. It seems their service is guilty of tracking the location of users, and sharing that info. While that might not sound over-the-top, Whisper is also tracking the location data of people who specifically ask not to be tracked. It seems Whisper is also sharing some info with Government agencies like the Department of Defense.

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