Social Recall: Snapchat’s revamp, Instagram ads, and the end of awkward cropping

January was just a trial month, right? The social media giants are all going BIG in 2018. February has brought some new changes for social media platforms and we are here to keep you up-to-date:

Snapchat starts February with a revamp

Social media platforms are constantly being accused of copying Snapchat’s format and features – but looking at this new redesign, is it possible that, for once, Snapchat is mimicking Instagram?

Snapchat started 2018 in a big way by revamping its whole interface. When typing a snap, the update allows the user to choose between the classic option, large text, glowing text and a rainbow effect – so the user can be more creative when typing over an image.

It cannot be confirmed nor denied that Snapchat did get its latest update ideas from Instagram. Although, Instagram released its update a week prior this does not give evidence that both platforms were not working on the updates simultaneously.

Another recent update feature is the “do not disturb” option which gives users the option to temporarily mute conversations. The ‘muted’ user won’t be notified that they have been ‘silenced’ – pretty sneaky, right?

The update aims to make the overall user experience easier, especially for those new to Snapchat.

New year, same annoying Instagram ads

More Instagram ads are coming your way! On February 1st, Instagram announced that carousel ads are moving to stories.

These ads will allow businesses to add up to three images or videos inside Stories. For those who, like me, find Instagram ads super annoying, don’t worry there’s hope. The option to click through Stories and swipe left and right is still available.

The three image/video ad option is only available to a select few, such as Coca-Cola; Gap; Renault; and Paramount, first as a taster before a more widespread rollout.

Facebook has put its foot down

At last! Facebook is saying goodbye to “misleading financial products”.

On the 30th of January, Facebook brought in a ban on any advertisements for cryptocurrency exchanges, initial coin offerings and binary options on any of its platforms.

Facebook stated that, “Two of our core advertising priorities outline our belief that ads should be safe, and that we build for people first. Misleading or deceptive ads have no place on Facebook.”

As cryptocurrency is extremely hard to regulate and it is liable to change rapidly and unpredictively, Facebook sees it as an easy target for scammers. Still, the interest in cryptocurrency remains on the up.

Of course, Facebook wants to protect its users from being targeted by potential scammers. Not only is this ban applicable on Facebook, but also on Instagram and any external websites that are connected to it.

Twitter fixes the awkward crop

After years of ‘awkward crop’, Twitter has finally changed its ways. You’ll no longer see images with people’s heads cropped out of the pic or photos of random walls. (Who doesn’t love a random wall?)

Twitter recently stated that it has changed how it chooses its focus view for images posted on the social platform. Previously, it used face detection, which often left images awkwardly cropped. Now, it’s using a combination of cropping using saliency and pruning and optimisations.

The combination of these two methods allow Twitter to crop images 10 times faster, as it performs saliency detection on images as soon as they are uploaded and cropped in real-time.

Here are examples of images before and after the recent change:

Before:

After:

If you’ve ever wondered why the images displayed the way they did, well now you know.

You can live another day without the the constant worry of awkward image cropping – hooray!

About Natalia Furlong

Natalia is a passionate Digital Marketer and a die-hard Harry Potter fan. She believes that anyone who says money can't buy happiness has clearly never tried a €6 spice bag.