Welcome to the Weekly Tech Update with me, Mike Walmsley. It’s a look at everything that has happened in the world of technology, the Internet, Search Engines and social media over the last week. This week I have stories about Apple, Google, Pinterest, The EU and I ask the question “Are you addicted to Facebook?”
If you are watching this then you probably already own a smartphone but Vittorio Colao, CEO of Vodafone, is predicting that the word smartphone will become obsolete within the next five years as everybody will have a smartphone by then.
If you have an iPhone 5 or the latest generation iPad with the lightning connector then you may want a speaker dock to go with it. JBL have launched the OnBeat Micro, the first speaker dock to fit the new devices. It has an app for volume control and mixing tunes and also has a USB port so that you can connect older iPhones or Android phones for example. It will retail for about £80.
US Marine Sargeant Winston Fiore has walked 5000 miles across Asia to raise money to allow children with cleft palates to have facial reconstructive surgery. What makes his walk even more incredible is that he is using Google Maps to navigate his way across Asia. I’ve also heard rumour that a man walked 5000 miles guided by Apple Maps, he was trying to get to his local corner shop to buy a pint of milk!
The European Union has agreed to help boost broadband to rural areas of the UK. They have set aside £530 to partly fund improvements. The remainder of the money will be put up by local councils and the Internet service provider providing the infrastructure. It is hoped that by 2015 90% of the population will have broadband speeds of at least 2Mbps.
There have been murmurings that Google made a major update to their algorithm last weekend with many site owners saying that their rankings had been affected. Google will not confirm or deny whether there was a major update last weekend but they have confirmed that there will be another Panda update in the next week or two. You have been warned!
On the subject of Google Matt Cutts released a video this week dealing with the reconsideration request process that Google has. If your site loses rankings either fairly due to something you have done on your site, such as keyword stuffing, or if you think that your site has been unfairly penalised you can submit a reconsideration request. To do so you first need to be signed into Google Webmaster Tools and Matt said that the process should be completed within two weeks.
Do you use Facebook on your mobile phone? If you do then you have probably been frustrated with the lack of a share button for when you are going through your newsfeed. Liking and Commenting are good but sometimes you do just need to share somebody else’s content with your own social network. Well Facebook have finally added the share button to both their iOS and Android apps. If you are watching this on your mobile via my Facebook business page then go on, share it, I dare you!
If you are a social media manager then you might be interested to know that Pinterest has now created business accounts for brands to use. Previously a Pinterest account was tied to an individual whose name would also be the account name, now your business name will appear. You can also create follow and pin buttons for your website. Pinterest is probably the most visual of all the social networks as it is driven by people pinning images to their boards and because it is so visual it is a brilliant way for companies to build brand identity.
And finally, I have read reports about an Australian lady who was so addicted to Facebook that she saw a hypnotherapist to try to cure her of her social media addiction. In this particular case a lot of the issues occurred after she split up with her partner but I have been at a party where I watched one, nameless, individual sitting in front of his laptop all night hitting the refresh button every 30 seconds to see if there was anything new on Facebook. We live in interesting times…