Why Marketers Should Care About the Apple Watch

apple-iwatch-9Apple will sell more than 10 million Apple Watches and dominate the smartwatch category in 2015. But despite the hype, the smartwatch category will represent just 1% of the 2 billion smartphones on the globe. So should marketers even be paying attention to the Apple Watch?

The short answer: Yes.

For now, it’s a good way for marketers to learn how to deliver extremely contextual experiences to a niche set of early adopters and influencers. Down the line, we can expect Apple Watch to increase visibility and appeal for the entire wearables category, and unleash innovation focused on delivering more intimate brand experiences.

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Instagram overhauls its search features to focus on trends

instagram-7.0Instagram’s search just got a lot more like Twitter.

The company’s latest update completely overhauled the app’s search and Explore features to make it easier to find posts around specific events, places or themes in real time.

The new Explore menu is a major departure from previous versions of the feature, which surfaced photos and videos solely based on users you followed and posts you liked in the past. The app now takes a much more Twitter-like approach by surfacing posts based on tags and locations currently trending on the platform.

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Facebook developing tech that can recognize you in photos — even if your face isn’t showing

facebook-momentsFacebook is working on facial-recognition technology that can identify someone even if their face isn’t in the photo. The tech recognizes people in photos using distinguishing features other than their face, according to New Scientist.

To test its algorithm, Facebook scanned more than 40,000 public photos from Flickr with faces in the frame or out of it, and eventually achieved 83% accuracy using the software. The algorithm looked at various attributes, including hair, clothing and body type to determine who was in the photo.

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Google is launching a ‘YouTube built for gamers’ to take on Twitch

Channel_Page_Desktop.png.0Google is now officially taking on Twitch. As rumored, the company today announced YouTube Gaming, an app and dedicated website designed to be a home for all its gaming video both live-streamed and on demand. YouTube Gaming will launch this summer starting in the US and UK.

Google is positioning YouTube Gaming as a separate experience from the rest of YouTube; according to the announcement post, “you can search with confidence, knowing that typing ‘call’ will show you ‘Call of Duty’ and not ‘Call Me Maybe'” (for the record, I’m seeing three Call of Duty suggestions ahead of “Call Me Maybe”). More than 25,000 games will reportedly have their own landing pages for related videos in addition to channels from game companies and YouTube content creators. It doesn’t seem to be, however, an altogether separate platform — all the videos we’re seeing today exist on YouTube proper as well.

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