YouTube rolls out a short-video ad tool for small businesses

YouTube is introducing a new tool that would allow small business owners to create video ads in the least possible cost. The tool is fairly easy to use and doesn’t require any technical or creative know-how.

Titled as the YouTube Video Builder, the tool went for a testing phase with a small group of users and is now being rolled out to the general public. According to Ali Miller Director, Product Management, YouTube Ads, the video builder will specifically help small businesses during the pandemic when the need to release videos quickly is apparent.

Business owners who wish to access this tool can log on to the service via their Google account. They can also link their non-Google email address to avail the service. Businesses will also need to have their own YouTube channel to upload videos.

The operations of the YouTube video builder is simple. Advertisers can utilize images, text, and photos from their business’s profile and customize the layout, colors, and fonts as per the preference. The video can be either six-second or 15-second long and will be uploaded as Unlisted on the company’s channel.

The company can also share the video on social media and/or embed it with other websites. And if they wish, they can run the videos on ads through Google Ads.

Similar to YouTube, Vimeo also released a tool to aid small business owners to create professional-looking social videos in February. Last fall, Facetuner maker Lightricks also launched a line of apps that would be helpful for small businesses in their social media marketing campaigns.

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Facebook Friendships Could Be Used To Determine Covid-19 Spread

The coronavirus might just be the single biggest threat that humanity has ever faced, and that truly is saying something. We need to get ahead of it and a big part of the reason why that is the case has to do with the fact that if humanity fails to flatten the curve then it could potentially cause a lot of problems that would include us being set back quite a bit in terms of economic growth as well as technological progress.

One of the best ways to ensure that everything works in your favor is by looking into tracking the spread of the virus, and it turns out that Facebook might just be quite good at doing this sort of thing all in all. The reason behind this is that the social media platform, with its Social Connectedness Index, can make it quite clear who people are quite connected to, and this makes it a lot easier to track who might have been exposed to the virus and who needs to be quarantined for their own safety as well as the safety of others.

If someone is diagnosed with COVID-19, their friends list can be used to see who they might have met and thus who might have been exposed to the virus. This will make it a great deal easier for the necessary precautions to be taken, and a lot more can be done in order to make the most of things like this all in all. This is just one example of how technology can make it a great deal easier for this virus to be handled adequately, and in a lot of ways these are things that matter a lot more than you would have initially realized. Facebook’s help in this regard could be a game changer for key players in the fight against coronavirus.

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WhatsApp Limits The Forwarding Of A Message To Only One Person At A Time

WhatsApp Limits The Forwarding Of A Message To Only One Person At A Time To Slow Down The Spread Of Misinformation

  • The platform announced to put new limits to forwarded messages after a mass increase in the spread of the coronavirus misinformation.
  • Previously, you could forward a single message to up to 256 users at a time, but the company has been putting limits on this feature over time.
  • WhatsApp experiencing surged traffic during these days could potentially help the misinformation to spread even more and here are the steps the company is taking to curb the spread of this misinformation.

Whatapp announced to put a limit on the forwarding of the messages on Tuesday after there was an increased forwarding of the messages containing the coronavirus misinformation. If a message has been forwarded by a chain of 5 users, it will be identified as a ‘highly forwarded’ message by the company’s server and then the user will only be able to forward this message to only one person. The new policy will be implemented moving forward and aims to create friction to lower the speed with which data moves across the platform.

The Facebook-owned company stated in its blog post that they know their users forward messages containing useful information, memes, entertainment content, or meaningful prayers and quotes. The users have also organized public moments in recent weeks to support the frontline health officials who are combating the coronavirus. But the platform stated that they have also seen a huge rise in the distribution of coronavirus fake news and it is important to slow down its speed so the platform will continue to be a better place of private discussion for the users.

Earlier, it was easy for the users to forward a message to up to 256 people with only a few taps and these messages also not indicated to be forwarded. It was almost unattainable for the platform to induce who might be spreading hate speech across the platform due to the end-to-end encryption in WhatsApp. This issue once was the reason for a crisis in India in which the said platform was linked to anarchy.

The platform tested to put a limit on the number of times a message could be forwarded for the first time in 2018. The company placed two arrows to indicate a message was forwarded and the platform reduced the number of people a message could be forward down to 5 users in 2019 which is now dragged down to only one user.

This soft limit still allows you to forward a message to as many people as you want to but you will have to send the message over and over again to different contacts on your WhatsApp. According to the company, this friction is an effective measure to reduce the speed with which the messages spread across the platform and there was a decrease of 25% in the forward globally during the last year.

Several studies and news publications have raised their concerns regarding fake news on Whatsapp and it appears the Facebook-owned app has started to listen to some of its critics. Recently, Whatsapp integrated a search button to cross check the content of a message in Google search, the messaging platform also facilitated a bot that provides verified information about COVID-19 and donated $1 million to the IFCN, which are indeed a good small step towards fact-checking content from the web. Yet, Whatsapp needs to implement better and more smart content moderation strategies to effectively deal with the misinformation propaganda.

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Apple’s long-awaited TV service launches

Apple’s long-awaited streaming video service went live early on Friday morning.

Apple TV+ is a $4.99-per-month service featuring original TV shows and movies bankrolled by Apple. The service is launching in over 100 countries and regions, according to Apple.

It can be accessed through the pre-installed TV app on Apple’s devices, including the iPhone and iPad, as well as through apps for various smart TVs and set-top boxes made by companies like Roku, Samsung and Amazon. Apple is also streaming its shows on its website for people using Safari, Firefox or Chrome browsers.

The launch of Apple TV+ is a critical moment for Apple as it strives to sell content and services to its 900 million iPhone users, instead of just selling them computer hardware and software.

In a sign of how important the Apple TV+ launch is for the company, it held one of its famous launch events this spring centered around the service — and no hardware or gadgets were launched. Apple has also reportedly spent billions on content for the service, including signing up celebrities such as Jennifer Aniston to act in and produce original shows.

Apple TV+ is entering a crowded market. Disney’s Disney+ service launches later this month, offering content from brand-name franchises such as Marvel and “Star Wars” for $6.99 per month. CNBC parent NBCUniversal and AT&T’s WarnerMedia are planning to launch services early next year. Netflix currently has over 151 million subscribers.

Apple is using distribution to its large footprint of active devices to compete against companies with more media experience and content.

Apple TV+ will be free for a year with purchase of iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, Apple TV streaming box or Mac computer. Those gadgets have to be purchased after Sept. 10, 2019, and if users cancel, they lose access to the service, according to the terms and conditions.

Shows available on the service now include “The Morning Show,” “See,” “Dickinson” and “For All Mankind.” It also includes a few shows for kids, including “Helpsters,” “Ghostwriter” and “Snoopy in Space.” Oprah Winfrey is also hosting a talk show called “Oprah’s Book Club.”

Additional movies, documentaries and shows will be added later. Unlike Netflix, Apple won’t release full seasons of its shows all at once. But there are exceptions. “See,” for example, launched Friday with the first three episodes available right away.

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China officially launches 5G networks on November 1

All the three state-backed telecom operators, China Mobile, China Telecom and China Unicom, unveiled their 5G plans on Thursday, one day ahead of the official launch of 5G services in the country, with the cheapest package priced as low as $18 per month.

Chinese carriers officially launched 5G services in the world’s largest market on November 1, but the coverage remains limited only to major Chinese cities and key areas in lower-tier cities for the initial rollout.

On Thursday, all three state-backed operators — China Mobile, China Telecom, and China Unicom — unveiled similar 5G plans for local consumers, with plans starting at 128 yuan ($18) per month, which will provide consumers with 30GB data and 500 minutes of voice chat, according to a Sina news report

Subscribers of China Mobile that pay 598 yuan ($85) per month will be able to use 300GB of data with download speeds of up to 1Gbps, whereas the entry-level plans will only have 300Mbps download speeds.

The initial 5G services will be available in about 50 Chinese cities, including Beijing and Shanghai, as well as second-tier provincial capital cities like Nanjing and Wuhan, according to local reports.

In Beijing, as many as 5,000 base stations have been installed by China Mobile alone, covering a majority of the core areas, but it is still unavailable for vast rural areas, according to the report.

The launch of 5G by Chinese carriers is a step slow in comparison to local smartphone brands such as Huawei and Xiaomi, as they have already introduced several phone models over the past few months that can support 5G networks.

But local consumers are believed to be excited about the 5G networks as more than 10 million users have registered for 5G plans from the three local Chinese carriers ahead of the launch, Chinese reports said in early October.

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10 Fun Facts You Didn’t Know About Google

“Google is not a conventional company. We do not intend to become one.” So began the “letter from the founders” penned by Sergey Brin and Larry Page in the company’s securities registration form in 2004. Despite ever-increasing commercial success since that date, Brin and Page have kept to their word.

Google is an unconventional company with a huge stake in our online lives. It is a source of fascination for many, including us, but what really happens in the Googleplex? And what cool factoids and stats exist from the company’s relatively short past?

Here we bring you 10 fun facts about Google to quench our own thirst for Google knowledge as well as hopefully offer you a distracting diversion from your daily life.

  1. The First Google Doodle

 

Google’s famous homepage “Doodles” (the changing Google logo graphics) are well known and enjoyed by millions around the world as a way to mark an event or anniversary. But did you know that the very first Google Doodle was designed as a kind of “out of office” message?

In 1998 Brin and Page took the weekend off to go the Burning Man festival in Nevada. The Burning Man doodle (shown above), was designed by the Google guys and added to the homepage to let their users know they were out of office and couldn’t fix technical issues like a server crash.

     2. Interesting Figures from the Google IPO

While the initial price for Google’s stock at its Initial Public Offering in August 2004 is an interesting stat in itself, there’s more to the story. The opening price for Google’s stock was $85 per share. At the time of writing, the stock price was $483 but has soared as high as $600 in the past year, making GOOG a rather nice investment for many.

A bonus factoid from Google’s IPO process is the value Google stated it hoped to raise on its S-1 form — as much as $2,718,281,828. It may just look like a string of numbers to non-mathletes, but 2,718,281,828 is actually the first ten digits of the mathematical constant “”e”,” showing that even as their company was planning to go public, the Google guys could still geek out with a bit of numerical humor.

     3. The First Google Storage Was Made From LEGO

As proud hosts to Google back when it was still a research project, and known as “BackRub,” here Stanford now showcases the original Google storage from way back in 1996. It’s made up of a whopping 40 GB (less than a modern iPod) and it’s made from, as fans of the building bricks will be delighted to see, LEGO. It even hash funny mini-figures on the top.

Legend has it that the reason for the LEGO construction was that the Google guys needed an easily expandable, and cheap way to house 10 4 GB hard drives, and LEGO fit the bill. Whether the primary colors of the bricks used were the hues that went on to inspire the Google logo’s design is up for debate, but we’d guess it wasn’t just a coincidence.

4. Google’s First Ever Tweet

Google’s first ever Twitter post was as satisfyingly geeky as you could hope for. The message, sent in February 2009, reads “I’m 01100110 01100101 01100101 01101100 01101001 01101110 01100111 00100000 01101100 01110101 01100011 01101011 01111001 00001010.”

For anyone not fluent in binary, here’s a hint — it’s a well known phrase from the company’s homepage. Got it? Yep, it reads: “I’m feeling lucky.”

 

     5. Google Rents Goat

This one isn’t actually one of Google’s infamous April Fools’ Day jokes: Google rents out goats. Yes you read that right. It rents goats from a company called California Grazing to help cut down the amount of weeds and brush at Google HQ.

The operation of 200 goats (plus herder and a border collie) is kind to the environment, and as Google puts it: “A lot cuter to watch than lawn mowers.”

     6. Google’s Impact on Language

While you’d think the news that the Merriam-Webster and Oxford English Dictionary adding “google” as a verb to their lexicons in 2006 would thrill the search engine, Google was actually none too pleased with the development.

“We’d like to make clear that you should please only use ‘Google’ when you’re actually referring to Google Inc. and our services,” the company wrote in a blog post at the time.

The rationale behind the semantic displeasure was that Google had “a brand to protect,” and feared Google would “slip from trademarked status into common usage.” Now, four years later, we have to say Google was fighting a losing battle — just ‘google it.’

However, we’ve found some other Google-themed linguistic delights for you — a Google staffer is commonly referred to as a “Googler,” while a new team member joins as a “Noogler.” Nooglers also used to wear a colorful hat with a spinner on top. According to a former employee, those hats are now pretty scarce in some offices, instead: “Every Noogler gets a yellow smiley balloon and a nameplate.”

7. Google Is Dog-Friendly

Google is a super dog-friendly company. It proudly names “company dogs,” like Yoshka (described as a “free-range Leonberger”) pictured above. Yoshka accompanies Urs Holzle, senior VP operations and Google Fellow to the Googleplex. Less senior staff are also allowed to bring their dogs to the office.

According to Google’s “Dog Policy”, one indiscretion too many on the Google carpets, or aggressive behavior, means Lassie will have to stay at home in the future. Strong bladdered and friendly canines are more than welcome across the campus.

Unfortunately, cats are not quite as welcome. Here’s an excerpt taken directly from Google’s Code of Conduct: “Google’s affection for our canine friends is an integral facet of our corporate culture. We like cats, but we’re a dog company, so as a general rule we feel cats visiting our offices would be fairly stressed out.”

8. Google’s First Ever “Company Snack” Was Swedish Fish

Back in February, 1999, the chewy candy known as “Swedish Fish” became the first ever company snack (not counting beverages) that was ordered into the Google office.

Although a relatively small event, it has led to big things. Google is infamous in the industry for treating its employees to not just free drinks and snacks on tap, but full-on gourmet meals, three times a day at a plethora of on-site cafes and eateries, as well as regular BBQs during the summer.

Brin and Page have been quoted in the past as saying no Googler should have to go more than 100 feet for food, leading to snack-filled “microkitchens” that are liberally dotted around the Google offices.

In fact, the free food is said to be so tempting that Googlers risk the “Google 15,” similar to the “Freshman 15,” where they pile on weight soon after joining the company. Good thing they also have a Google gym.

Backing this up, here’s a stat from Google — “Bay Area Googlers consumed approximately 5,500 pounds of handmade chocolates from the snack bins in the microkitchens in 2007.” Wow.

     9. The Google Logo Was Not Centered Until 2001

Google’s famously sparse homepage is considered a classic design in the online world. The Google logo, however, wasn’t actually centered on the page until March 31, 2001. As early users will remember, the homepage had a bias to the left-hand side, and even earlier — back in 1998 — Google sported a Yahoo-style exclamation mark.

10. Google Has a Company Dinosaur


By all accounts, there are many wondrous sights to be seen at the Googleplex, but one of the most arresting is surely the gigantic T-Rex skeleton — nicknamed “Stan” after a “real” dino found nearby — that looms menacingly at Googlers in Mountain View.

Joining Stan in the unique campus decorations is a scale replica of the SpaceShipOne, enormous Android-themed models, pink flamingos, a large LEGO man, Google-colored phone boxes and grown-up size ball pits. One thing seems for sure — just like the company itself — life at the Googleplex must be far from dull.

 

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Drop-shipping business in Nigeria ? (Facts)

Are you planning to start a drop-shipping business in Nigeria? Great idea! Here are some facts and stats about this market!

Dropshipping is a retail fulfillment method where a store doesn’t keep the products it sells in stock. Instead, when a store sells a product, it purchases the item from a third party and has it shipped directly to the customer. As a result, the merchant never sees or handles the product.

1) Nigeria has the highest mobile eCommerce market in Africa.

2) In 2023, the number of Facebook users in Nigeria is expected to reach 30.4 million, up from 22.4 million in 2018.

3) 50% of the population is under the age of 30.

Want to start your Ecommerce business of Drop shipping business ? talk to our Experts today 08034737744.. remember YOUR CUSTOMERS ARE ONLINE

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Nigerian banks to face stiff competition from fintech firms

..as CBN moves to boost USSD, agent banking and PSBs

  • Nigerian banks will face stiff competition from fintech firms, according to Moody’s Investors Service.
  • This is coming as CBN make plans to implement measures to boost the utilisation of USSD, mobile banking, agency banking, and payment service banks.
  • Nigerian larger banks, Access Bank Plc, Zenith Bank Plc, First Bank of Nigeria, United Bank for Africa Plc and Guaranty Trust Bank Plc will defend their market shares due to their customer bases and technology budgets.

[..]

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What is 4G ?

What exactly is 4G/LTE and how does the technology work?

While the terms 4G and LTE are often used together, I think of them as separate terms and will address them individually. 4G is somewhat vague, but it refers to fourth generation wireless data speeds faster than 3G, which in turn is faster than 2G. Those terms are also somewhat vague, but I think of 1G data as slow dial up, initially 300 bps, eventually upgraded to 600, 1200, 2400, 4800, 9600, on up to maybe 14,400 bps. 2G data was initially in the 14,400 to 56k range and is now typically around 128 Kbps to 256 Kbps. 3G is roughly 1 to 1.5 Mbps and possibly as high as 3 or 4 Mbps. 4G would be anything faster than that, typically 4.7 Mbps on up. [..]

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Here’s Why Your Business Needs Its Own Mobile App

Mobile penetration in Africa has grown more than 80 percent, according to a report by TA Telecoms. Researchers have also predicted that internet use on mobile phones in Africa will increase 20-fold in the next five years.

Mobile Apps are booming in Nigeria. Studies see an annual increase of over 30% in the usage of apps in Nigeria, both for global apps and for local apps.

If you think that mobile apps are solely for big name brands like Walmart and Bank of America, you are wrong. More and more small and midsize businesses are following the mobile trend, understanding that an effective mobile strategy involves more than just a mobile-friendly website. [..]

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Why Does Your Business Need an Online Presence?

In this digital age, the Internet has profoundly altered the way we do business. This is because most of the people prefer simple and appropriate ways to buy or get a service done.

According to a study, more than 88% of all Internet users search for products, services, and websites, using search engines and online directories. So, if you want to be recognized by those 88% customers, get your business online today.

Importance of Online Presence for a Business

Digital Marketing has enabled drastic ways to reach a maximum number of customers and to convert those visitors into leads. Hence, whether it is small scale or an MNC having well-defined space on the web is essential to experience significant gains. Check-out few reasons why your business needs an internet presence. [..]

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