12 Major Updates From Facebook, Google, Pocket & WhatsApp

Social network news of the week - Facebook’s take on Instant Articles for advertisers is here, Pocket is getting serious about its monetization model, Facebook launches Reactions, and more


1. Facebook Canvas, a.k.a. Instant Articles for brands, officially launches: Facebook’s take on Instant Articles for advertisers is here. The social network officially launched Canvas today, a full-screen, video mobile format that is intended to engage people more than a regular video ad. And, similar to Instant Articles, Canvas ads load 10 times faster than a standard mobile website.

2. Snapchat Enlists Nielsen to Track Ad Campaigns: Advertisers are enamored with the massive growth of Snapchat. But if they’ve had one persistent gripe, it’s been that Snapchat is behind other media companies when it comes to providing data on the performance of advertising campaigns. To remedy that, Snapchat is teaming up with Nielsen to supply marketers with third-party data measuring their ad campaigns.

3. Facebook Will Extend ‘Canvas’ Ad Format To Instagram: Canvas will be syndicated to Instagram in the second half of 2016. The company will explore extending Canvas to its Audience Network as well.

4. Twitter Enhances Embedded Timelines: Using Twitter’s embedded timeline on your website? It’s about to get better. Exactly one week from today, on March 3, a more sophisticated, modern and sleek timeline will be rolled out. The new timeline will feature responsive design, automatically expand media (such as videos and GIFs) and integrate newer recently launched Twitter features, such as Twitter polls.

5. Google Launches AMP Listings; Here’s How They Look: Yesterday, Google officially launched AMP in the Google search results, although many searchers saw it a day earlier. Now, when you search on your mobile device for queries that trigger news results, you may see a Google “AMP” icon in the search results. It may show under the news carousel or in a top news listing category.

6. Facebook Launches Reactions Globally: Facebook today is launching Reactions to all users, the company announced. Facebook Reactions, which have been in the works for quite some time, extends the Like button to allow people to express other reactions, such as Love, Haha, Wow, Sad or Angry.

7. Instagram Is the Star of Facebook’s Renewed Interview Show: Facebook has renewed “Pub in Pub,” the series it premiered in October 2014 that interviewed marketing and agency execs about their creative strategies. But unlike the first season that spanned Facebook and Instagram campaigns, the second season will focus solely on the photo-sharing service that Facebook bought in 2012.

8. Pinterest Launches Updates To Rich Pins With Recipes And Movie Data: Pinterest has launched updates to its movie and recipe Rich Pins, extrapolating more rich data to enhance the user experience on the platform. With recipes being one of Pinterest’s top pinned categories, and with millions of ideas being shared across both food and entertainment, it was a natural fit for Pinterest to go a step further to add helpful data within each pin.

9. Pocket will now include sponsored posts in its recommended feed: Pocket — the article and video saving service that raised $7 million in funding last year — is getting serious about its monetization model today by introducing new sponsored content.

10. Twitter launches Fabric app for iOS and Android: Twitter today is announcing the availability of a mobile app for its Fabric mobile development toolkit. The app is immediately available on both iOS and Android.

11. WhatsApp Debuts An Official Android Beta Testing Program: WhatsApp has now launched an official Android beta testing program. The move could expand the Facebook-owned company’s ability to reach a broader range of testers by making it easier to sign up to trial new versions of the WhatsApp software. Meanwhile, on WhatsApp’s side, it should be simpler to distribute new releases and features as they become available.

12. Snapchat is now selling filters to anyone for $5: Now, anyone can submit a filter design toSnapchat to be approved within a day, which then can appear in a designated area between the area of 20,000 square feet (an office floor) to 5,000,000 square feet (several city blocks). The filters appear live between an hour to up to a month.