Welcome to the new daily feature to JacobBodnar.com. In this daily post I will rundown the tech and social media news stories that mattered to me today. Even better, these are the stories I bookmarked today to discuss on Status Update at the end of the week. So now you can follow along with the planning of the show!
These stories are not necessarily the “biggest” stories of the day, just stories I find interesting, topics I feel need elaboration or highlighting, or something I just want to lampoon. I’ll provide the headline, and them some additional commentary.
Why Facebook Needs Two Photo Apps
Much has been made about the recently released Facebook Camera app. Essentially it is Instagram, well a limited version of Instagram. Everyone has been opining as to why Facebook would acquire Instagram and then launch a brand new photo app. This article makes some very good points as to why.
For starters, this Facebook Camera app certainly took longer than two months to create. So there’s a decent chance it was in the pipeline for Facebook before they acquired Instagram (especially considering the rather rushed nature the Instagram deal was hashed out in). Secondly, the article points out that the Facebook Camera app is for sharing photos within Facebook, and interacting on Facebook. It is important to remember that Instagram is a separate social network, with separate users and separate functionality and social worth. It is not just an app that pushes photos to various networks.
To me this drives home Facebook’s persistence that they plan to keep Instagram a standalone app and untouched. Photos are a piece of the overall Facebook experience, why not create an app to accentuate that? If you’d like a community based completely around photos, then go to Instagram.
Facebook Looking to Buy Opera – yeah, the browser
I have been made fun of for enjoying the Opera browser. But I have to admit, as far as browsing experiences go, it is probably second on my list (only behind Chrome). Their mobile browser is good, but it seems to iOSy to run on an Android device. And now Facebook is going to ruin it!
Forgive me for feeling like the sensitive-hipster-Instagram-users that were destroyed when Facebook purchased their precious and secluded social network. In all honesty, I don’t care if Facebook buys Opera, although I don’t necessarily think it is a smart move.
I understand what Facebook is attempting to do here, they provide a service, and the more people you get looking and interacting with that service the better. It is the same reason, effectively, that Google purchased Android. Get mobile phones using Google services. With this buy, Facebook is not going after the desktop market – Opera is too small of a share and there’s no need for a “Facebook browser” on a desktop – they are going after the mobile market. Opera is a beloved browser on mobile, better than the stock Android browser and certainly years ahead of the clunky and slow Firefox browser. They could pick up some more mobile clout, while also providing a seamless Facebook experience, making it easier to share stories and other content you find online. It could make sense, I just fear Facebook might be trying to do too much.
Siri: “Steve Jobs Would Have Been Embarrassed”
Mashable ran a great article today detailing one man’s test of the Siri commercials. He asked the virtual assistant the same commands as the famous celebrity commercials, and watched as she struggled to understand what he was saying. This of course came as a surprise to no one.
Furthermore, a former Apple employee was quoted as saying Steve Jobs would have been embarrassed to run an ad that depicted their product doing or accomplishing something that it simply fails at. Siri has been a bit of a PR disaster for Apple. There have been numerous complaints about its usefulness and accuracy, and there’s even a class action lawsuit in the works. When these celebrity ads were announced I made the point that Apple doubling down on a struggling product made little sense. Furthermore, I think it was a huge mistake to feature a beta product as the “headlining” feature of the phone. Did it hurt Apple? Probably not, but it certainly was not “Apple like.”
Apple TV Slated to Debut in December?
And finally, a Rumor Has It moment. Another rumor about the Apple TV debuting in December.
Really? How dumb.
The rumor goes on to claim Apple would release the TV the following year. So let me get this straight, they would announce an Apple TV around the holidays, build up buzz about it, and not have it available for the busy shopping time of the year? They would rather release it the following month, when disposable income is historically very tight? That would be terribly stupid and a disaster. If Apple is releasing a TV this year it will be alongside the iPhone in October as one of their “And one more thing” announcements. If we don’t see it then, we ain’t seeing it this year. My guess: we’re not getting an Apple TV in 2012.