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September 27, 2012 | By Salvador Rodriguez
As awesome as birthday comments are, nothing beats a gift. And Facebook has taken note. The social networking giant announced a new service Thursday afternoon called Facebook Gifts that will let users buy and send each other presents they can enjoy in real life. To start, these presents include Starbucks gift cards, stuffed animals and cupcakes, but Facebook said it will continue to add more options every day. Picture Gallery: Fresh Facebook Features The company said users will have the option to send gifts from birthday reminders or when they visit their friend's timelines.
March 7, 2013 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Facebook unveiled a new News Feed design Thursday, saying the social network will now emphasize visual content. Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg presented the new design, saying it is a mobile-inspired design that will be consistent with the news feed found on Facebook's mobile app. Zuckerberg and Facebook's Julie Zhou, director of design, said the new layout will put photos and visuals front and center. Photos: The evolution of the Facebook News Feed Zuckerberg said the change comes as a result of photos now making up nearly 50% of all posts on users' news feeds.
April 16, 2012 | By Jessica Guynn
Social networking mobile app maker Path said Monday that it raised about $30 million from venture capital firms such as Greylock Partners and Redpoint Ventures and individual investors such as Virgin Group's Richard Branson and DST Global's Yuri Milner. The investment values the San Francisco company at $250 million. Path, which had previously raised $11.2 million, is the brainchild of former senior Facebook executive Dave Morin and Napster co-founder Shawn Fanning. It's riding the new wave of tech companies that are building for mobile, not the Web. Path has been compared to Instagram, which Facebook said last week it would buy for $1 billion.
June 26, 2012 | By Salvador Rodriguez, This post has been corrected. See note below.
Facebook introduced a new native Messenger app for users' computers. The app lets you "chat with friends without opening Facebook," according to Facebook's message introducing the app. The app is only available to Windows users, but the company has said Mac users will get it soon. It officially launched in March after leaking in December, and it is slowly rolling out to users. ROUNDUP: The freshest Facebook features The app, Facebook's first native desktop app, uses the same branding as Facebook's mobile Messenger app, which received an update on both Android and iOS on Monday.
December 11, 2012 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Facebook is opening its Gifts feature to all U.S. users, the social network said Tuesday. Gifts is one of Facebook's big attempts this year at creating additional streams of revenue to complement its advertising sales. The feature capitalizes on the birthday and congratulatory wishes people send one another via Facebook by giving them a quick and simple way to purchase someone a present and have it sent to them. Users can also use the Gifts feature to send an another gift cards or donate to charities and nonprofit groups.
November 28, 2013 | By Mary Forgione, Los Angeles Times Daily Deal and Travel Blogger
Hotel Tonight is offering same-day hotel rooms for $99 on Black Friday in Southern California, Las Vegas, New York, Chicago, Atlanta and other parts of the country. The deal could come in handy for shoppers who want to stay in the city or anyone ready to hit the road after Thanksgiving. The hotel booking mobile app recently announced it would start listing rooms at 9 a.m. instead of noon, a big boost for travelers (like me) who like to roll the dice and find a good last-minute deal.
November 13, 2012 | By Dawn C. Chmielewski
Couch potatoes take note: YouTube has found a new way to send videos from a mobile device to the TV -- starting today. The updated YouTube mobile app pairs phones, tablets and Internet-connected TVs that share the same wireless Internet connection. This wireless link allows users to browse YouTube from their mobile devices, click a TV icon and watch videos on their living room TVs. The feature, which has been under development for about two years, will be offered initially on Android devices and on Internet-connected Google TVs. A growing number of applications, including Zeebox, IntoNow and Shazam, seek to harness the mobile phones and tablets in the living room to provide content that supplements the programs playing on TV. The new YouTube feature essentially turns mobile devices into a sophisticated remote control that a viewer can use to pause, scroll or skip to the next video as it plays on your TV. ALSO: ICM talent agency partners with maker of second-screen apps Not enough 'NCIS: Los Angeles?
April 3, 2014 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Count Twitter as the latest company to jump on the emoji bandwagon. The microblogging service said it will now display the cartoon icons on its website. The San Francisco company made the announcement Wednesday afternoon in a tweet filled with a dozen of the playful icons. ¿¿¿¿ Twitter users love tweeting emoji from their phones - now you can view these emoji on web! #emojiparty ¿¿¿¿ ¿¿¿¿ ¿¿¿¿ ¿¿¿¿ ¿¿¿¿ ¿¿¿¿ ¿¿¿¿ ¿¿¿¿ ¿¿¿¿ ¿ - Twitter Support (@Support)
December 17, 2012 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Want to send a saucy photo? Facebook is looking at a way to do it discreetly. The 1-billion-user social network is reportedly set to release a new app before Jan. 1 that will be similar to Snapchat, an app often used to send "sexts," or sexually explicit content, according to All Things D , citing unnamed sources. QUIZ: How much do you know about Facebook? Snapchat, which has grown in popularity in recent months, allows users to send pictures and videos that disappear after a set time period.
March 27, 2014 | By Salvador Rodriguez
You've got a decent set of speakers but almost all of your music is in your smartphone. You could attach a cable or buy yourself a wireless Bluetooth speaker for hundreds of dollars. Or you could consider getting the $49 Rocki, a tiny device that turns traditional speakers into "smart" ones that can be controlled with a smartphone. The gadget is essentially a low-cost alternative to getting a Sonos wireless sound system. Rocki attaches to the back of the speaker's auxiliary port.
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