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The Social Short: Week 33

Facebook Adds New Slideshow Option To Stories


Facebook has said more than once how they expect Stories to overtake posts in feed, eventually becoming the most popular way in which people share across all apps.

Spotted by social media Expert, Matt Navarra, Facebook may be rolling out a new option that will enable users to add a still image slideshow to their story. Though it is possible to simply select each image one by one, this can prompt more people to use.

More importantly, the relevance lies in Facebook wanting to continue this push towards Stories. The platform is is determined to get more people using Stories and this is another small update that could help. Although it does seem that Facebook Stories are gaining some traction, it is hard to know for sure how many people are actually engaging.


Face ID May Finally Be Coming To MacBook




Face ID, Apple’s facial recognition system may finally come to MacBooks. Apple has just been granted a patent for a Face ID-like system to implement for MacBook. This has been long overdue, seeing as the patent was filed back in 2017, well before the iPhone 8 was released and made Face ID the success that it is today. Despite the functionality being so well received, even the latest MacBooks have been relying on Touch ID.

If rolled out, the patent would extend the MacBook’s Power Nap capabilities to the camera. Power Nap allows current Macs to perform certain background tasks while sleeping. When it would detect a person, it would power up Face-ID to wake and unlock the computer.

While Apple does patent many things that do not end up seeing the light of day, it seems about time for them to bring Face ID to Macs, especially since this functionality is supported on both iPhone and iPad. If and when this will happen is therefore still to be seen, but it could be a reality sooner rather than later.


Google Launches AR Walking Directions For Google Maps


Google AR


Earlier this year Google launched a beta of an augmented reality walking directions feature called “Live View.”  Up until this week, this one had only been available on Google Pixel devices. However, it has now been announced that it will be rolling out on all Android or iPhone handsets that feature AR technology. Android devices that support ARCore or iPhones that include ARKit support will be able to access Google Maps Live View in beta as of this week.

The feature shows real-time navigation in Google Maps through your phone’s camera. To use it, users need to simply hold their phone up to their surroundings and they will be shown real-time augmented reality overlays telling them how far to walk, where to turn, etc. Arrows and directions will appear in the camera view, helping users get from one destination to another.


Instagram Is Testing A New AR ‘Background’ Feature For Stories


Google AR


We are increasingly seeing more and apps rely on AR technology. Instagram has been the last one to want a piece of the action. According to reports, the social media platform is testing a new AR ‘background’ feature that lets users change the background for their Stories. Discovered by Jane Manchun Wong, this new feature, called “background”, will even let users choose images from their camera roll (see above).

At the moment it seems to only support static images, but this many very well change by the time it is made available to users. It remains to be seen if and when this feature gets rolled out.

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