social

Hannah Kuchler

It’s #ThrowbackThursday, where the internet celebrates all things Michael Jackson and dodgy haircut-related. For Facebook, it is a chance to announce a retro app called Rooms from its Creative Labs team, the engineers and designers who play around with creating different kinds of social apps that may not be every Facebook users’ cup of tea.

According to the blogpost that accompanied its launch on Thursday, Rooms is a throwback to the “early days of the web” when it was about “connecting to people who you would never encounter otherwise in your daily life”. Read more

Hannah Kuchler

  Twitter users may notice a change to their timelines today, as the company that likes to boast of its real-time qualities makes its product a little less chronological.

Before this, the timeline was, as they say, one thing after another. But now, in the “spirit of experimentation and evolution”, Twitter will show users popular tweets they may have missed and even some tweets from people they don’t follow. Read more

Hannah Kuchler

Instagram takes pride in being more than just a corner of Facebook. The pretty photo-sharing app that Facebook bought in 2012 has maintained much of its independence while picking and choosing from the strategies that have served Facebook well.

Now, with the launch of super-fast video app Hyperlapse, it is becoming clear that Instagram will follow in Facebook’s lead and create its own suite of apps, or as it is becoming known in social media world, a multi-app strategy. Read more

Hannah Kuchler

A Flickr co-founder has been quietly compiling a map of the world’s stories in an attempt to transform location-based apps from drab star-based ratings and recommendations into a lively map packed with history, culture and personal tales.

From the historical Blue plaques that line London streets to maps of subcultures such as “Punk Rock in Chicago”, Caterina Fake’s new app Findery aims to help users discover new places in a more imaginative way. Read more

Hannah Kuchler

The company also announced last week that it will help advertisers to target people who have already visited their website and tempt them back through promoted tweets. This so-called “retargeting” is common across the web and Twitter said trials had seen “impressive results”.

Advertisers recorded substantial increases in engagement and conversion rates, and a fall in the cost of acquiring a customer. But Twitter, which has been praised by campaigners for its privacy policies, said users can chose not to see tailored ads. Read more

Hannah Kuchler

Pinterest, the online scrapbook recently valued at $3.8bn, will allow companies including Walmart, Nestle and Random House to show off the most popular pins about their products on their own websites. Read more

David Gelles

Social television startup GetGlue — which lets users “check-in” to TV shows — has raised another round of funding from existing investors, including Time Warner, and a new lead investor, RHO Ventures. Read more

Tim Bradshaw

Mark Zuckerberg said in September that Facebook’s new sharing tools for music, video and news would “transform” the media world, with the social network “rethinking the whole way the news industry works”.

A few weeks in, there are early hints he might be right. Music services such as Spotify and Deezer had shared 1.5bn “listens” as of last week, while Rdio has seen a 30-fold increase in new user registrations from Facebook.

But the transformation is not necessarily what Facebook’s founder or his new partners in the news industry might have expected. A surge of Facebook traffic to years-old stories may be forcing news sites to reassess the importance of, well, news. Read more

Tim Bradshaw

Anthony Rose, technical driving force behind the BBC iPlayer and before that Kazaa, this week returns to the start-up world with Zeebox, an iPad app designed to tap the growing trend for “dual screening”. Read more

LinkedIn, the professional networking site with 90 million users, announced a new product today that aims to transform the site from an occasional directory into a daily social destination. Read more