9 Major Updates From Facebook, Google & Twitter

Major updates from the world of social networks that include Google launching Mortgage Shopping Tool, Facebook login comes to the Apple TV, Twitter adds more choices to native polls

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1. Facebook Login Comes To The Apple TV: The biggest shortcoming in Apple’s newly launched Apple TV is the lack of a Remote app for the iPhone. In particular, when you first set it up, you’ll have to manually enter your Netflix password, Hulu password and more using your Apple TV remote. But Facebook’s new SDK for tvOS seems like a good way to avoid this cumbersome onboarding experience.

2. Twitter Adds More Choices To Native Polls: Twitter is giving poll-makers more choices. At launch in October, Twitter polls were limited to two answers. Today, the company is giving people the ability to add a third and fourth option for people to vote on, as this timely poll from Twitter shows.

3. Google’s answer to Facebook ‘Instant Articles’ is launching early next year: Google’s project to boost the speeds that news articles load on smartphones will kick off “early next year” with several large media organizations already committed to support the effort, Google said in a blog post.

4. Google Drops Display Of Local Business Reviews in New Google+: Local business reviews didn’t make the cut in Google’s wholesale revamp of Google+. Google+’s redesign, announced last week, puts the focus on Communities and Collections and removes display of reviews and other local business information such as addresses, phone numbers and hours of operation.

5. Snapchat Taps User-Generated Content to Expand On Stories, Ramp Up Video Views:Snapchat just made it easier for users to find clips their peers shot of a news event: A new feature dubbed “Story Explorer” makes it possible to find additional footage around the clips that Snapchat’s team has curated for one of the service’s stories.

6. Social media drove more referrals than search to 2015’s biggest news stories: Publishing analytics provider Parse.ly wanted to find out where web traffic for 2015’s top news stories came from — search engines or social networks. The company found that social media continues to account for a large and growing portion of traffic, depending upon the content of the news story.

7. Google Launches Mortgage Shopping Tool In California, More States Coming Soon: Google is now a licensed mortgage broker in California. The company today launched a mortgage comparison tool for home shoppers in California, with support for more states coming soon.

8. Facebook & Instagram Now Offering Ads Targeted At Holiday Shoppers: Last minute shopping for holiday customers? There’s still time on Facebook and Instagram. The social network is rolling out a new ad-targeting segment to enable brands to zero in on people who are highly engaged with content related to holiday shopping, including Black Friday and Cyber Monday. The segment, which will run from Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day, can be used on any ad format on either network.

9. Facebook’s Oculus Finally Ships First Consumer Product: Samsung Gear VR: Oculus, the virtual reality startup that Facebook bought for $2 billion in 2014, is finally launching a consumer product. Sort of. The long-awaited Oculus headset won’t be available until the first quarter of 2016, but Oculus technology is powering the Samsung Gear VR unit that is shipping today.