Early on Thursday Instagram announced a new feature called Instagram Direct. The new feature allows users to privately share photos or videos with up to 15 people. Obviously this is a new direction for Instagram, as previously sharing a photo was an all-or-nothing act.
All right, with that out of the way, let's begin.Your inbox
You can access your Instagram Direct inbox by tapping on the mailbox icon in the top-right corner. This is where … Read more
The company behind the mobile messaging app Kik announced Thursday that it now has more than 100 million registered users, which is more than triple the number it had just one year ago. The app is signing on as many as 250,000 new people each day, CEO Ted Livingston told CNET.
Launched in 2010, Kik makes a messaging application for iPhone, Android, Windows Phone -- and BlackBerry unofficially. It was the BlackBerry app that initially helped Kik get off the ground in the early days. But after a legal tumble with BlackBerry, the Ontario-based company decided to focus exclusively … Read more
A little unsolicited advice to tech companies wanting to hold an event: Bring something at least moderately interesting or new to the table.
Otherwise, you end up like Instagram, which on Thursday unveiled Instagram Direct, its take on the direct and instant messaging feature that's available on virtually every other major service. The moment was, to say the least, disappointing.
Instagram, a unit of Facebook, is just the latest company to focus on upping its one-to-one messaging capabilities after building its business and customer base on its social turf. Founder Kevin Systrom spoke of Instagram as more than a … Read more
Southwest Airlines said Wednesday that it will begin offering passengers with iOS devices the ability to use iMessage, Apple's proprietary messaging system, from gate to gate.
The new service, which will be available to anyone with a device running iOS 5 or later, will cost $2, and work throughout the flight. Southwest is partnering with Global Eagle Entertainment to offer the connectivity.
The airline said it plans to expand the service to Android devices next year.
Southwest offers passengers in-flight Wi-Fi for $8, but it clearly feels that some people want to stay connected with friends, co-workers, or family, … Read more
Inexplicably, the world craves more kawaii cute characters.
The dizzying ascent of Japanese messaging app Line has marked another milestone, notching 300 million registered users worldwide, executives told a press conference in Tokyo.
For Snapchat, which specializes in the trafficking of vanishing images, women have materialized as its core user base.
About 70 percent of the photo-sharing app's users are women, Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel said during a closed-door Goldman Sachs conference on Wednesday, according to a Wall Street Journal account of the meeting. Spiegel also told attendees that users of his startup's app are now sending 400 million "snaps" a day on the send-it-and-forget-it photo and video messaging service, which deletes content after a few seconds.
The 23-year-old chief executive also said that half of Snapchat's users … Read more
Gmail is Google's default e-mail app, which means it matches most e-mail apps in terms of features, style, and organization. There's a reason it's the default on most Android gadgets. If your smartphone or tablet didn't come with it installed, there aren't many excuses to not have it, especially if you already have a Gmail address.
With Gmail you can organize multiple inboxes into one while adjusting categories, signatures, and notification sounds for each of them, separately. If you have Android 4.0 or higher, you can use Gmail's latest inbox settings, which organizes … Read more
Version 2.0 of Google Hangouts for Android now has SMS/MMS integration, as promised by Google back in May. It finally began rolling out to users on Thursday, and the feature adds convenience for people who use text messaging and Hangouts by unifying the two into a single app.
The first time you launch Hangouts after the update, you're prompted to enable SMS in Hangouts or try it later. If you opted to give SMS in Hangouts a try, but still prefer using separate apps, you can disable the SMS integration.
On devices running Android 4.3 or … Read more
A hit with mobile messengers in Asian countries, Line plans to introduce itself to the US market with the help of Sanrio and its beloved female Japanese bobtail cat Hello Kitty.
The Japan-based messaging and VoIP calling service, which launched in June 2011, has more than 280 million registered users. Line is credited with popularizing the now ubiquitous practice of sending digital stickers in messages to friends.