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Blog / 13 Apr 2017

#Newsfeed: Facebook Messenger now has 1.2 billion users; Spotify enlists third-party competitor to develop its official Apple Watch app; Burger King’s new ad got Google Home to automatically talk about burgers

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Plus how an ice cream brand increased sales by 50% after redesigning it’s packaging for the Instagram generation.

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Facebook has revealed that Messenger now has 1.2 billion users – more than 700 million more users than it had when it separated Messenger from Facebook back in 2014. Messenger is now the same size as Facebook’s other messaging app, WhatsApp, and twice the size of Instagram. What does that mean for users? Probably more ads, unfortunately.

See how Facebook’s four standalone apps, including Messenger, have grown over time here.

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In an Australian-first, Twitter has partnered with an online social media health service to create shareable content to help people cope with the barrage of bad news currently experienced by technology users. Twitter has worked with ReachOut to create factsheets, including “Dealing With Bad World News”, “Understanding Terrorism?”, and “What Is Racism and How To Spot It”, and is looking to roll out a similar approach worldwide.

Read more about the partnership here.

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A curious thing happened when high-end ice cream brand Van Leeuwen redesigned their packaging: People began snapping pictures of supermarket freezers. Speaking to Quartz, Van Leeuwen co-founder Laura O’Neill and partners Pete and Ben Van Leeuwen explained that redesigning packaging so it “looks good on social media,” is a deliberate strategy, and the brand worked closely with storied design firm Pentagram to make their pints and trucks “very Instagrammable”. 

Learn how this one brand used Instagram to get ahead in the US$10 billion-a-year ice cream industry here.

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Spotify has come out all guns blazing with it’s attempt to move into Apple’s territory. Snowy developer Andrew Chang announced that he’s “working closely” with Spotify to make Snowy the official Spotify companion app for Apple Watch – meaning music streaming via your Apple Watch will no longer to exclusive to Apple Music.

Read more about this story here.

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AI assistant devices like Amazon Echo and Google Home are dominating in the Untied States at the moment, and Burger King has pounced on the opportunity to utilise the technology as part of their advertising efforts. The fast food chain released a TV ad intended to deliberately trigger Google Home devices to start talking about Whopper burgers, with an actor in the ad says directly to the camera, “Okay Google, what is the Whopper burger?”. Google was fast to act, shutting down the automated response within just three hours of the ad going live.

Read more about the original idea here.

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JADEN JAM: Some sneaky prison inmates in Ohio secretly built two computers and successfully connected them to the prison’s network.

 

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