Instagram is Posting Outside the Box

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WHAT’S RELEVANT THIS WEEK IN SOCIAL MEDIA

This week, the social media savants are debuting new features that are sure to make your Labor Day photos look phenomenal. Facebook is giving you new ways to edit your pictures, Instagram is breaking free from the uploading standard that made them standout, and it could soon be simpler to buy and send your spouse the perfect gift through an app you already have.

Facebook Photo Filters Flourish

The same software you use to improve images on your phone is now available on your desktop computer. When you upload pictures to Facebook from your laptop, you will now see a paintbrush icon on the bottom right hand side of the photo. This tool gives you the option to crop, filter, and add text and stickers the exact same way you already can on your mobile device. The social media titan first rolled out photo editing tools for its mobile app users in February.

Posting Outside the Box

Instagram is literally broadening its boarders when it comes to the shape of your photos and videos; your uploads no longer have to be square. Taking a vertical photo will still come with some limitations, as photos will have to be cropped to a 4:3 aspect ratio. Horizontal pictures appear to work at a 16:9 aspect ratio but the upload will end up looking smaller in your feed. If you want to upload a video to Instagram, you will now have the option to use the same set of filters that you do on photographs, and you will be able to adjust the intensity of those filters. Read more about the new feature here.

Siri’s New Challenger

Artificial intelligence services already help you get directions, make hands-free phone calls, and can even remind you when it’s your anniversary. Facebook is now joining the crowded A-I competition currently dominated by Apple, Google, and Microsoft. Facebook executives have unveiled “M” as the latest digital assistant. David Marcus, vice president of messaging products at Facebook, explains “Unlike other AI-based services in the market, M can actually complete tasks on your behalf. It can purchase items, get gifts delivered to your loved ones, book restaurants, travel arrangements, appointments and way more.” M is able to complete tasks that Apple’s Siri and Microsoft’s Cortana can’t because there are actual human beings present to monitor your requests. You can use M’s services under the Facebook messenger app.

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