1. Facebook Is Now Letting Everyone in the U.S. With an iPhone Livestream Video: The social network today announced it has expanded Live Video access beyond celebrities, verified users and journalists to any U.S. user with an iPhone. The Menlo Park-based company said in a blog post that it plans to roll out the feature around the world in the coming weeks. Live Video for Android is also in the works.
2. Snapchat Is Slowly but Surely Letting More Brands Run Long Video Ads: Brands are going long on Snapchat—at least with video. After beginning to test the first “swipe to view” video ad with Activision’s Call of Duty in November, a series of brands are now experimenting with ads that promote clips longer than 10 seconds.
3. Facebook Now Seeing 100 Million Hours Of Video Watched Daily: Facebook reported another banner year yesterday, touting huge growth across the board. Ad revenue is up, daily active user numbers grew, and CEO Zuckerberg says his social media site is now seeing 100 million hours of video watched daily.
4. Mobile Ad Growth Of 81% Drove Facebook’s Huge Fourth Quarter: Yesterday, Facebook announced a $5.8-billion quarter, the majority of which is ad revenue ($5.6 billion). The company also reported that an astounding 80 percent of its ad revenue ($4.5 billion) was generated by mobile advertising. That represented revenue growth of 81 percent year over year.
5. Gigya Report: Facebook Still Dominates Social Logins But May Be Fading A Bit: Facebook is still the king of social logins on websites worldwide, but its dominance may be on a slow decline. That’s the big takeaway in the “Landscape of Customer Identity” Q4 report from customer identity management provider Gigya, out today.
6. Facebook Audience Network Opens Up To Mobile Web: Facebook is expanding its Audience Network (FAN) to include mobile websites, not just apps. News that the social media giant was testing an expansion of what started as an in-app advertising network in 2014 broke earlier this month. Facebook says it has been working with global publishers such as Hearst, Elite Daily, USA Today Sports Media Group and Time Inc. to test FAN on their mobile sites in a closed beta.
7. Microsoft Launches A Bing-Powered News App For iOS Devices, News Pro: Microsoft today unveiled yet another application aimed at iOS users, with the launch of a news application that greatly resembles Apple’s own News application that comes built into iOS 9. Called “News Pro,” Microsoft’s app aims to offer readers a personalized experience by connecting them to articles that match their current interests, while also uncovering other sites and stories they may like.
8. Google Takes On Twitter By Integrating Real-Time Responses From Presidential Candidates Into Search Results: Google announced today that it will begin testing an experimental featurewill allow presidential candidates to respond to issues brought up during the Republican debate in real-time directly in Google’s search results. The search company says the feature is meant to “level the playing field” as it lets the candidates share their ideas or positions – even if they didn’t have a chance to on stage.
9. Periscope Is Now Livestreaming GoPro Footage: In a post this morning on Medium, the livestreaming app owned by Twitter announced the integration is available for iPhone users. A post on GoPro’s website also unveiled the news, foreshadowing what X Games fans might expect this week during the extreme winter sports competition in Aspen, Colo. The new feature is available on the GoPro Hero 4 camera, allowing users to switch back and forth between GoPro and iPhone cameras.
10. Marketers Can’t Target Ads to Twitter VIPs: If you were a marketer hoping to reach the Twitter elite through its ad platform, think again. Re/code reports that Twitter VIPs are not seeing these paid promotions, giving them a completely ad-free experience.
11. Twitter To Up The Ad Ante With 30-Second Skippable Pre-Roll Ads: Looks like long form at Twitter isn’t only being limited to tweets. Digiday is reporting that Twitter is now offering pre-roll advertisements through its Amplify program that run from 15 to 30 seconds, a substantial increase from the previous six-second standard that it adopted and was popularized by its standalone video product, Vine.