We’ve pulled together the latest news from the social space in our weekly Industry Round Up. Explore the top headlines below and get up to speed with the latest news!
Meta’s Haptic Glove
Meta – formerly Facebook – recently previewed work on the development of haptic gloves – enabling users to feel and interact with virtual items, as part of the companies broader shift in becoming a metaverse company.
As explained by Meta:
“Imagine working on a virtual 3D puzzle with a friend’s realistic 3D avatar. As you pick up a virtual puzzle piece from the table, your fingers automatically stop moving as you feel it within your grasp. You feel the sharpness of the cardboard’s edges and the smoothness of its surface as you hold it up for closer inspection, followed by a satisfying snap as you fit it into place.”
According to the company, the technology has been seven years in the making. The glove is still far from being an affordable product for regular consumers but does allude to what Meta is looking to achieve in creating an immersive virtual experience.
The U.S Video Streaming Platform Slump?
The market in the U.S for streaming platforms is potentially fully saturated as platforms such as Disney+, Netflix and HBO Max experience limited growth of new subscribers.
Disney shares dropped by 7% after the company announced a slump in new subscribers, only adding 2.1 million new subscribers in the latest quarter falling short of predictions of 10 million. If Disney is to compete with Netflix, the platform must invest in diversified content and high-rated shows – something the CEO of Disney has made clear in future intentions to investors as the company looks to increase investment into Disney+ in the coming year.
The D’Amelio Show Renewal
This year Hulu released the first season of the D’Amelio Show, which featured the famous TikTok family, providing access behind the scenes of the creator covering the good and the bad.
Hulu later stated the show was the most-watched unscripted series ever, with the show driving conversation across TikTok with the hashtag #TheDAmelioShow generating over 600 million views.
Now the show will be returning for a second series, a testament to the popularity of social media stars and how their audiences can transfer to other platforms.
Eric Decker’s XTreme Pong Creator Tournament
YouTube creator, Airrack (also known as Eric Decker), hosted a ping pong tournament with 12 creators who all competed as part of a sponsored event. Creators involved included FaZe Rug, Bryce Hall and Charly Jordan – to name a few.
The event was live and produced by a creative marketing company. Interestingly, the event also included NFT elements. Each participating in the event is now set to auction off their paddle used in the event, each paddle will feature a chip that certifies uniqueness and is accompanied by a digital token.
TikToker Daniel Lemay to Open NYC Ice Cream Store
Catch’N Ice Cream is poised to open next spring and is a statement to the scooping skills of TikTok creator Daniel. Digital components are expected to play a huge part in the creator’s venture, with flavor collaborations from celebs and influencers to be expected. It is also predicted that delivery will be available to consumers in the region. This closely aligns with the MrBeast’s Burger launch, in that, an online creator launches a consumable product and leverages creator collaborations to tap into fanbases to maximize sales.
The Female Streamer Debate
Recently, StreamElements and Rainmaker conducted a report that looked at data from October 2021 of top streamers on Twitch per hours watched. The top female streamer was Amouranth, with her content being watched for over 3 million hours, which was nearly double of Pokimane – another of the platforms top female creators.
However, the report highlighted the gap between female and male streamers with female streamers being notably absent from the top 10 overall creators list. This raises questions of if platforms are doing enough to push diversity, and why exactly male streamers are pulling in more views? Is it to do with users watching streamers similar to them, which is predominantly a male lean on the platform such as Twitch anyway?
Facebook Expanding ‘Neighborhoods’
Facebook launched ‘Neighborhoods’ last year, following the popularity of another platform during lockdown named Nextdoor. Essentially, both help connect local communities together online.
Now Facebook is adding new fundraising and community support initiatives to the platform, whilst coinciding these new features with the expansion of ‘Neighborhoods’ to an extra 132 cities in the United States. The aim here is to strengthen local connections and soon provide a new way for marketers to hyper-target consumers per location within specific pockets of communities.
YouTube’s Live Stream Shopping Events
YouTube is jumping on the live-stream shopping bandwagon for the holidays with a series of live-stream events, running from the 15th to the 22nd of November. The event will be hosted by various influencers/celebrities and will allow users to make direct purchases in the app while interacting with the host. Much like other platforms launching live-stream shopping events, YouTube will offer exclusive discounts and provide a more intimate experience between influencers and viewers.
The live stream hosts include; Gordon Ramsey, the Merrell Twins, Donut Media, Patrick Starrr, Jackie Aina, Manny MUA and MrBeast. YouTube product designer Wendy Yang shared some insights from a recent study done with Publicis and TalkShoppe, “89% of viewers agree that YouTube creators give recommendations they can trust, and 87% of people say they get the highest quality information about products when shopping or browsing on YouTube.”
Instagram ‘Badges’ Expansion
Instagram is expanding ‘Badges’ to all eligible creators in the U.S – meaning creators must be 18 or over in age, live in the U.S and have a Creator or Business account with 10,000 followers.
The monetisation tool enables users to purchase heart icons next to their usernames during live streams, showing to the creator they have provided financial support. Users can purchase three tiers, either one, two or three hearts – each increasing in price ranging from $1 to $5.
This feature is another way Instagram is looking to incentivise creators to remain on the platform and generate high-quality content to keep users engaged and in-app for longer.
Instagram’s Carousel Editing Feature
A long-requested feature for many users and creators on Instagram is the option to delete individual posts within an already posted carousel post.
Now users will be able to edit the post by clicking the three dots menu and tapping the delete icon on the specific image or video within the carousel that you wish to remove.
This addition allows for better control over the content and an option that avoids having to delete the whole post and re-upload. Considering carousels have become the most popular post format on the app – it was important that greater control was provided.
Snapchat Adds New ‘Food Scan’ Feature
The new addition is part of a partnership with Allrecipes and is designed to provide users with recipe recommendations when they scan ingredients through the app. This feature can help provide users with further inspiration for their culinary choices, while additional scan options like ‘Nutrition Scan’ can help identify the health elements of packaged food and help users make healthier choices.
In addition to this, Snap’s Food Scan will also return food facts from Wikipedia, which could be another way to learn more about what you are eating, furthering recipe discovery.
Snap’s New ‘Layers’ Option in Maps
Snapchat is developing the Snap Map to better highlight specific places for the individual user. This will be achieved through ‘Layers’. The first option is ‘Memories’, highlighting top Snap moments from the last 12 months. Another option, ‘Explore’ will showcase public Snaps from various locations.
Snapchat is also reported to be working on more layers that include ‘Partnered Layers’, facilitating brands to sponsor certain map listings to promote the business. According to Snap, 250 million Snap users regularly utilise the Snap Map, so the additional ‘Layers’ option could help maximize engagement, connection and discovery on the app.
Pinterest Launches TwoTwenty
Pinterest has announced the launch of a new product and feature development team named TwoTwenty. The name is a nod to the platform’s original offices will include a dedicated team of engineers, designers and content experts that are tasked with testing and launching new ideas.
This is very similar to Facebook’s NPE (New Product Experiment) team, who are also tasked with testing new app features to improve and react to platform trends.
The first experiment by the TwoTwenty team was the live streamed creator events – now Pinterest TV, so no doubt this team will help accelerate the growth of the platform through exciting new features that respond to industry shifts.