Posts tagged with "Snapchat"

Snap plans launch of gaming platform in April

March 18, 2019

The U.S. technology and camera company, Snap, finally will introduce its widely discussed (but never-disclosed) gaming platform at a summit for content and developer partners in Los Angeles on April 4, Cheddar has reported.

The mobile game platform, internally code-named “Project Cognac,” will feature several games that outside developers have designed specifically to work in the multimedia Snapchat app, according to a person familiar with the matter, Cheddar said.

In addition, the company will launch more videos similar to the augmented reality Snap Originals that it began posting last October.

An invitation to the event that was seen by Cheddar includes the tagline, “Less talk. More play.”—a nod to the gaming platform.

To help bolster its push into the games sector, Snap last year acquired a small Australian gaming studio called Prettygreat for $8.6 million, according to financial documents obtained by Cheddar. One of the employees of Prettygreat was behind the hit mobile games “Fruit Ninja” and “Jetpack Joyride.”

Snap also already has demonstrated its interest in gaming by launching a handful of its own lightweight, augmented reality games—called Snappables— early in 2018.

A year earlier, the Chinese tech giant Tencent—known for its popular messaging platform WeChat, as well as such games as “League of Legends”—acquired roughly 10% of Snap’s publicly traded shares.

Games could provide a new source of revenue for Snap, Cheddar notes—either through in-app purchases or advertising.

A Snap spokesperson declined to comment on the record for the Cheddar story.

Research contact: @cheddar

Mutt shots: Snapchat offers lenses for dogs

December 27, 2018

The Internet already is a dog-eat-dog world, with pooches worldwide vying for “top dog” (and top money) on such sites as Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.

Now, Snapchat has introduced special lenses that will help proud owners to digitally dress up their hounds for the holidays in reindeer ears, eyeglasses, pepperoni pizzas, and even butterflies.

To try them out, PC Magazine advises, simply open the Snapchat camera and press on the screen to open the lens carousel, as usual. Scroll through the carousel until you find a lens with a little blue pawprint icon on it, aim your camera at your dog, and prepare to say “aww.”

Dog lovers have been “barking mad” since October, when Snapchat brought cat-friendly lenses to its platform, but left out filters for Fido. With both available as of this week, we can expect more varieties (and maybe a few filters for our iguanas and parrots?).

Appealing to dog and cat owners might just help Snapchat offset declining user engagement on the platform, PC Magazine reports. The company also recently introduced Snap Originals, five-minute exclusive shows that feature new episodes everyday. Originals can be found in the “Discover” section of the app or via Snapchat search.

Research contact: @Snapchat

Among social media users, Facebook rules

March 14, 2018

Facebook remains America’s most popular social media platform, with roughly two-thirds of U.S. adults (68%) self-identifying as users and about 75% of them catching up with their “friends” at least once a day, based on findings of a poll by The Pew Research Center released on March 1.

With the exception of those 65 and older, most Americans across a wide range of demographic groups now use Facebook, the poll of 2,002 Americans over the age of 18 concluded.

Only YouTube gets more traffic, with 73% of respondents noting that they visit the site regularly. The video-sharing site—which contains many social elements, even if it is not a traditional social media platform—is now used by nearly three-quarters of U.S. adults and 94% of 18- to 24-year-olds.

In line with that trend, some 78% of 18- to 24-year-olds use Snapchat—whether or not Kylie Jenner loves it anymore—and a sizeable majority of these users (71%) visit the platform multiple times per day. Similarly, 71% of Americans in this age group now use Instagram and close to half (45%) are Twitter users.

Of course, that’s not counting President Donald Trump, whom Fox News says has given Twitter “a big boost.” He even fires his high-level employees via the platform—which he used on March 13 to oust Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and install CIA Director Mike Pompeo in his place.

Several other platforms are popular among special interest groups, including:

  • Pinterest, which remains substantially more popular among women (41% of whom say they use the site) than men (16%).
  • LinkedIn, which continues to be especially popular among college graduates and those in high-income households. Some 50% of Americans with a college degree use LinkedIn, compared with just 9% of those with a high school diploma or less.
  • WhatsApp, a messaging service that is particularly popular in Latin America, and this following extends to Latinos in the United States—with 49% of Hispanics reporting that they are WhatsApp users, compared with 14% of whites and 21% of blacks.

Finally, the share of social media users who say these platforms would be hard to give up has increased by 12 percentage points compared with a survey conducted in early 2014. But by the same token, a majority of users (59%) say it would not be hard to stop using these sites—including 29% who say it would not be hard at all to give up social media.

Research contact: tcaiazza@pewresearch.org

Striking a (love) match

February 6, 2018

Was that a tingle you felt when you first saw your significant other—or was it just your smartphone vibrating? While 59% of U.S. adults agree that dating apps “are a good way to meet people,” there still seems to be a cringe factor when sharing that information with friends and family, based on results of a poll conducted by Civic Science and released on February 2.

Dating apps such as Tinder—with an estimated 46 million users globally—may be all the rage, but only 14% of respondents to the recent poll think that finding someone online will lead to a lasting romantic relationship. In fact, 40% of American adults think that meeting in person is the best start for a solid relationship. Just over one-quarter of U.S. adults think there is equal opportunity to meet online or in person.

An estimated 15% of all adults are on dating apps, but the general population still believes in the randomness of an interaction on the street. Men are slightly more likely to think people can find relationships online.

People influenced by social media (and heavy Snapchat users) are more likely to believe people are “Equally likely to find relationships online or in person.” It seems familiarity with technology overall doesn’t mean you’re trusting it with matters of the heart.

How does age factor into our takes on love? Baby Boomers are more likely to believe that relationships should start in person, rather than online. Millennials—presumably the generation most familiar with dating apps—are most likely to believe that there is an equal opportunity to establish a lasting relationship, whether you meet online or in person.

Overall, while a favorable sentiment towards online dating may be growing, across all demographics, people are still more likely to believe the best relationships start by meeting in person.

Research contact: emma@civicscience.com

Anonymous survey finds Netflix pays more than other tech companies

December 5, 2017

Recently, Blind—the anonymous chat app that is being used surreptitiously by thousands of employees nationwide—asked followers who work at tech companies a sensitive question, Business Insider reports: Do you think you are paid fairly?

The answers, from over 4,000 respondents, were somewhat unexpected. For example, the tech workers who are happiest with their compensation are not employed at tech giants Google or Facebook; they are at Netflix, followed by Dropbox, NerdWallet, Twitch and Snapchat.

Conversely, based on the survey findings, the employees who are least happy with their earnings work at Walmart Labs. And 40% or more of employees polled at PayPal, Spotify and Twitter said they weren’t happy with their remuneration, either. In fact, 49% of all respondents were not satisfied with their salaries; leaving 51% who were.

As  to which companies had the most employees in this poll who were dreaming of leaving for the day and not returning? Groupon, HPE and Oracle each came in at around 90%.

Among the ten hottest tech companies today, Microsoft has the least loyal employees in this survey—with about 75% of its staff who responded that they are looking to leave.

Amazon also scored at the top of corporations that were not good at retaining staff, with about 60% of the company’s respondents on their way out the door.

Finally, it is little surprise that the most steadfast employees worked at Netflix, where respondents said they were happiest with their pay.

Research contact: blindapp@teamblind.com