Facebook + Instagram could mean better photo sharing for Facebook

On Monday, April 9, Facebook bought and acquired photo-sharing app Instagram for a whopping $1 billion.  Why would Facebook buy Instagram? Facebook is the top social network right now, yet it is lacking development in the mobile space and with photo sharing.  Instagram has been one of the most downloaded photo sharing apps ever and Facebook knew that acquiring the app would help improve their own photo sharing within Facebook.Image

Mark Zuckerberg explained the acquisition in a post on his Facebook Timeline Monday saying:

“We believe these are different experiences that complement each other. But in order to do this well, we need to be mindful about keeping and building on Instagram’s strengths and features rather than just trying to integrate everything into Facebook.”

So now all of those people worried that their beloved Instagram app will be destroyed can rest easily.  On the day of the acquisition many people went to Twitter to post negative tweets and urged Facebook to leave their favorite photo-sharing app as it was.  I think Facebook knew from the beginning that any changes made to Instagram itself would result in major backlash.

I am a Facebook user and also an Instagram user, and I agree with Zuckerberg, they are two separate apps and it should stay that way.  I am actually excited to see how Facebook uses Instagram’s features on their social network in the near future.

Google++

Google updated their social network, Google+ this wednesday with a new layout, features, and other visual goodies.

Now when you log on to Google+ you’ll be greeted with a new layout that seems to use a lot of whitespace; leaving a column of icons down the left side of the screen to navigate.  These icons can be rearranged by the user to their preference.  One of those icons, Explore, is a new addition where the user can view what is popular on Google+ at the moment.

Google+’s chat features have been moved to the right side of the screen where a user can easily see who is online and start a “hangout” video chat session.  To the left of the chat section, one can find a list of things that are trending on Google+, which I think is an awesome addition and maybe the most interesting part of the update.  With this new trending column, Google+ seems to resemble a combination of Facebook and Twitter in one.

Though Google has updated their social network, and certainly added attractive features, it’s hard to tell whether the public will even care at this point.  While Google+ has many accounts, it seems that the social network has become old news and personally, my news feed is quite bare.

I think Google has done a great job with this update, but I’m still not 100 percent sure if it’s enough to make me begin using their social network more often.  In a world where Facebook is dominating the social networking scene, any competitor is bound to have a difficult time gaining attention.

The iPhone 4S just got regional

On April 20, the Apple iPhone 4S and iPhone 4 will be heading to the regional networks of nTelos and Alaska Communications. This isn’t the first time the iPhone has came to a regional carrier, Mississippi’s C Spire gained the iPhone in November 2011.

With regional carriers gaining the iPhone, big carriers such as T-Mobile have still been left out in the cold.

I think that the move of the iPhone to smaller and regional carriers is a positive move by Apple to cover the entire field with their phones. One day, a person might be able to walk into any cellphone carrier store and find an iPhone on display

Does the iPad mini exist?

According to John Gruber, a trusted blogger of Apple rumors and owner of DaringFireball, says that his sources are confirming that a smaller iPad exists in Apple’s labs.

While this doesn’t confirm that a smaller iPad will make it to the public, it proves that Apple has and may still be considering it in the future. The supposed model has a 7.85″ display and would fill the void between the iPhones smaller screen and the iPad’s 9.7″ display.

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I feel that this smaller version of the iPad might be appealing to those that view the current iPad as being too large for portability. Also, this model would fit into the market of tablets that are appealing to those interested in reading and e-readers.

Facebook not happy over employers’ profile stalking

Many employers have began asking new employees for their social network credentials.

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Though there are no laws prohibiting the practice, Facebook has officially “condemned” the practice and Facebook chief privacy officer, Erin Egan, posted a statement on his blog speaking out against the practice. Facebook however does not plan to take legal action against these employers, but says that they hope to work together with policy makers to better safeguard users’ privacy.

As a Facebook user, I don’t think that employers should have access to user profiles, as they are meant to be a private space for someone to share with specific groups of people.

The new iPad is a hot product. Literally.

Due to many consumers complaining in Apple’s discussion forum of their new iPads running warm, Consumer Reports decided to test the tablet themselves.  They discovered that the new iPad ran around 13 degrees warmer than the previous iPad 2 during intense gameplay for 45 minutes.  Image

On top of this finding, Consumer Reports also discovered that new iPad did not charge at all while the game was played on the tablet and plugged in.  Once the game was closed, the iPad resumed charging as usual.  It seems that the new iPad will not charge under intense processing.  

Apple responded to the blog The Loop’s complaint of the overheating issue and said:

“The new iPad delivers a stunning Retina display, A5X chip, support for 4G LTE plus 10 hours of battery life, all while operating well within our thermal specifications,” Apple representative Trudy Muller, told The Loop. “If customers have any concerns they should contact AppleCare.”

As a new 2012 iPad user, I too have noticed the tablet getting warm while having many apps open at once, gaming, or downloading a large app.  I don’t think this is a huge issue and is over-exaggerated; all electronics get warm at times due to heavy loads on the processors.  The best resolution is to buy a case to cover the back or not do data-intensive tasks on the tablet while it is charging.

Behold…

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That is the ‘new iPad’ pictured above with its beautiful retina display and I am it’s happy new owner.

Today, March 16, was the US launch of the third generation iPad. Apple fans across the country and the world lined up outside their local tech stores to get their hands on this new Apple gem.

I got to my local Best Buy around 8 am and shorty the store managers came out with tickets to redeems our iPads when the store opened at 10 am. Around 10 am we were led to the back of the store to a check out counter where we purchased our promised iPads. I decided on the white 16 GB, wifi-only model and I can say that this was a great purchase.

Compared to my original iPad, this new iPad has a higher resolution, seems much faster, and the additions of the cameras are very nice. This was a worthy upgrade for an original iPad user and I think any would be happy with the improvements. I wasn’t an iPad 2 owner, so I can’t say whether the new iPad is worth your money, but if it were me I would just stick with the iPad 2 until the next revision.