With almost a billion active users, Instagram has become the world’s most popular social media platform. Instagram first started as a simple platform which allowed people to share photos, but over the years, it has grown to become one among the most popular apps in the world. To cope with the ever increasing popularity, Instagram is constantly changing, adding new features, removing some old features and switching up their algorithm. With every update the app has something new to offer to its users.
At this year’s F8 Conference, Instagram made announcements for some major changes it is going to bring to the app. Here is a list of a few of them:
1) Instagram Stories camera
The first new Instagram feature is a refurbished camera with a new camera mode called “Create.”
The new camera will feature a mode switcher which will make it easier to find all the creative tools. In the Camera mode, you can swipe right to access all the different shooting modes like Boomerang, Rewind and Superzoom. When you swipe left, you can access all the creative tools like stickers and GIFs.
2) Hidden like count
Instagram announced it is testing a new feature which will hide the number of likes on your photos.
According to Adam Mosseri, Head of Instagram, this new feature can take away the pressure people feel to get more likes on their posts. With the test, Instagram plans to remove the total number of likes from photos and videos which show up on your page. It will only show a call out of the people who have liked the photo but not the exact number of likes. However, on demand, the owner of the photo or video will be able to see the total number of likes.
3) Users can now buy products from their favourite Instagram influencers
Influencers are a huge part of Instagram and they can drive massive sales for brands.
The new Instagram update will let creators tag the products they are wearing or using on Instagram. This link will directly take users to the product page for instant checkout.
This new Instagram feature could be a big game changer for brands working with influencers.
4) All new creator profiles
Just like business profiles, influencers will now be able to switch to creator profiles.
This feature will give them access to some exclusive features and in depth analysis. They will also be able to access Instagram Creator Studio from desktop, which will have a wide range of analytics metrics.
5) Donation sticker for Instagram stories
With this new Donation sticker, it is much easier to raise money for non profit purposes from within the app.
Simply open the camera, take a photo and select the Donation sticker.
You can then customize and select the cause you support and upload the story. Hundred percent of the money you raise will go to the causes you support.
6) Force posts from influencers into your feed
Instagram is now going to show posts from influencers in your feed even if you do not follow them.
Typically, Instagram shows posts from people you follow in your feed along with some ads. However, this is going to change with the next Instagram update. Apparently, influencers can pay to promote their branded content and they will appear in your feed. Instagram confirmed, these paid posts will appear in your feed and your stories in the coming weeks.
This year, Instagram has brought some great features our way and at the F8 Conference, Instagram also mentioned it is testing some features like “Away Mode” and “Nudge.”
While these updates might be extremely beneficial for influencers and businesses, we will have to wait and see how these updates will be received by the regular Instagram users.
Is AI The Future Of Retail?
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is slowly becoming a key element in the modern, technologically driven world. Along with other industries, AI is also making its presence known in the retail industry.
Artificial intelligence is used to define the intelligence demonstrated by machines. Through AI, machines can store data from previous experiences, adjust to new inputs and can also perform human like tasks. By combining large sets of data, iterative processing and detailed algorithms, AI is able to learn quickly from patterned data. AI can become a crucial part of retail business, if integrated properly.
AI can be beneficial when it comes to daily task management and gaining insights about customers. Using AI in retail stores can also contribute to time management for business owners as well. This could also help in customizing the shopping experience of customers all the while creating a better business due to customer interaction. This, inturn, helps the business gain more customer insights.
Moreover, using such technology in the retail industry will leave less room for errors. It will also help owners keep tabs on shoplifting as every item will have a record in the store database. AI operated retails would be able to work 24*7 without any manpower, resulting in more profits for retail businesses.
Even though AI supported retail stores are still far away, two of the world’s biggest retailers, Amazon and Walmart, already introduced stores which are entirely AI dependent.
In 2018, Amazon announced a chain of convenience stores named Amazon Go, which are partly automated. The stores use several different technologies like computer vision, deep learning algorithms and sensor fusion. The ceilings of the stores are equipped with multiple cameras and the store shelves have weight sensors attached to them. These weight sensors help in the detection of the items taken by a customer and the item is automatically added to the customer’s virtual cart. Introduced on January 22nd 2018, Amazon Go has 18 outlets in the United States.
Meanwhile, Walmart, in April 2019, introduced its Intelligent Retail Lab (IRL.) Based in New York, this store comes equipped with artificial intelligence cameras, interactive displays and massive data centers. This store is also used by Walmart as a lab to explore the future use of AI in the retail industry.
While AI operated stores are beneficial to everyone, the cost behind such a project can be a real nightmare. Implementing high tech devices can be expensive, especially for small businesses and also increases dependency on machines. However, the benefits of this technology are much higher, to be ignored completely.
Incorporating artificial intelligence into the retail sector may sound like science fiction. However, the efforts put in by these giant retailers and the advancement of technology mean AI operated retail shops will be a part of our future.
Modern Technological Innovations To Combat Increasing Food Demands And Climate Change
Climate change has become a serious concern for the world in recent times. With various human activities worsening the world’s climate even more, scientists are working hard to find different solutions to combat the situation.
At the 2016 Paris Climate Change conference, where various political parties and activists gathered to discuss climate change, an agreement was passed with an aim to prevent global temperatures from rising. However, Microsoft founder and philanthropist Bill Gates argued there should be more effort put in than just a cut in global emissions to combat climate change. As a solution, Bill Gates, along with many other billionaires, launched a fund to invest in innovative technologies which will help combat this issue.
Global warming due to food and agricultural practices is a major concern for researchers and activists right now as it is estimated the global population will increase by 3 million people by 2050. This increase in population will require us to convert more forests and other ecosystems into agricultural fields to accommodate the need of the world population, resulting in the emission of 15 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide.
According to a report issued by the World Bank and the United Nations, there will be 50 % expansion of global food needs by 2050, with an increased need for meat based food products. It will require the conversion of nearly 600 million hectares of land for agricultural use and to meet the food requirements of the global population.
With a focus on finding solutions to the food related climate change issues, scientists are working on innovations for the reduction of food loss and waste and for the conservation of peatlands which release huge amounts of carbon dioxide after being converted to farmlands. They are also working on projects to help in decreasing the use of fertilizers in the agricultural field, which causes 20 % of the agricultural emissions in the environment.
Scientists are working on modern technologies like CRISPR Cas9, plant based meat replacements and compounds which stop fertilizers from being converted to nitrous oxide by soil microbes.
CRISPR Cas9 is a modern genome editing tool used in the manipulation of DNA and can be used to create or delete an entire genetic trait in a species. Scientists are working on using the technology to improve plant breeding by altering the genetic traits of various crop plants to improve their quality and increase their resistance from biotic and abiotic stresses.
World’s dependance on meat based food products is also a major concern in terms of climate change as there is no way to meet the meat requirements of 9 billion people worldwide. The solution to this problem is to develop lab grown meat and meat alternatives, undertaken by companies like Beyond Meat. Beyond Meat, which acquired an investment from Bill Gates, produces plant based meat burgers. These meat burgers are made entirely from vegetable protein obtained from peas and can be used as a replacement to meat.
Methane is a potent greenhouse gas which plays a major role in global warming. Majority of the methane in our ecosystem comes from our livestock, with a single cow releasing 3 tonnes of methane into the atmosphere every year by burping. Scientists at DSM Company developed a methane reducing feed additive which can make cows give out less methane.
There are other innovations done by researchers such as the use of solar power to produce hydrogen in nitrogen based fertilizers, using nontoxic spray on films to increase the shelf life of food items and developing crops which can absorb nitrogen, a major contributor to global warming.
It is a major challenge to feed an increasing world population without increasing the global temperatures, but with scientists working on technologies like CRISPR Cas9 and plant based meat food, there is still hope to achieve the impossible goal of combating climate change.
iPhone Unknown Facts
Introduced by Steve Jobs in the year 2007, the iPhone is a technological revolution which changed the fate of smartphones forever. It is also safe to say, the iPhone is one of the most coveted smartphones in the world.
Here is a list of few things you may not know about this amazing piece of technology.
Unknown facts about iPhone
1) The iPhone was originally called ‘Purple.’ Scott Forstall, the ex software head of Apple, revealed, the phone was initially named ‘Purple,’ after ‘Purple Dorm,’ the building where it was built and developed.
2) Cisco Systems owns the patent for the name iPhone for its VoIP phone. When Apple released its iPhone, Cisco sued Apple for using its name. Both the companies then reached a settlement and agreed to work together on products later in the future.
3) If you ever observed the iPhone commercials, you will notice, all the iPhones show the time as 9:41 A.M. Apparently, 9:41 A.M., was the time when Steve Jobs first unveiled the iPhone.
4) The retina display on the iPhone is its most expensive feature.
5) We are all aware of the rivalry between Apple and Samsung. Samsung was seen trashing the iPhone in many of its commercials. Still, it looks like these companies are not rivals after all. According to technology intelligence experts, the processor that powers the iPhone is actually manufactured by Samsung. Now that’s a shocker.
6) When the iPhone was introduced, founder Steve Jobs first used it to make a prank call to order 4,000 lattes from a nearby Starbucks store.
7) iPhones are the most profitable products created by Apple. They account for up to 70 % of Apple’s total revenue.
8) The iPhone earned 73 % of the profit of the smartphone industry in 2018.
9) In 2007, iPhone was awarded the Invention of the Year by TIME magazine.
10) By 2015, Apple sold around 700 million iPhones. Reports also suggest, the users of iPhone are more loyal to their brand than Android users.
Do you know any other interesting facts about the iPhone? Comment below and let us know.
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