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Corey Parker

Corey Parker

Monday, 17 April 2017 04:46

Google Maps Tricks You Didn’t Know

Learn how to use hard-to-find features of Google Maps with these tips and tricks to make your next commute easier.

Since its establishment in 2005, Google Maps has evolved remarkably with new features being made every day to improve our commutes. With over a billion users each month, the app has proved to be reliable in providing everything from satellite imagery to real-time traffic conditions. Many users, however, have not fully explored this digital innovation and are missing out on many of its great features. Here are a few of the Google Maps tricks that will make your next drive one to remember.

Street View

This is one of the least used functions in Google Maps. Many people have heard of it but do not know how they can activate it while on transit. You can virtually tour the location you want to visit before actually going there. So how do you activate it on your phone? First you need to type in the location you want to look up. Secondly, hold your finger onto the dropped pin on the map, then bring up the information by clicking on the address pop up. You should now see an image written Street View. Tap on that and you will be able to view the location you entered.

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Control Your Map Hands-Free

If you have had problems trying to type in an address while driving, here is one for you. Simply go to your Google Maps settings, tap on “navigation” and click on “Ok Google detection”, which will automatically activate hands free voice commands. Ensure you turn on the “while driving” toggle too which is right above. You can now automatically navigate by simply saying “Okay Google, find a nail salon” or even better say “Okay Google, play some music”.

Avoid Toll Roads

Everyone hates toll roads and if you can avoid them why not. Using your Google Maps, search for your destination. Before navigating, tap the information button on the upper right side of your screen. From the options given, select “Route Options” then click on the “Avoid Tolls” check box. This automatically reroutes you to roads that do not have toll fees.

Send Directions from Your Computer to Your Phone

Now this is one convenient function that is helpful to mainly those who are always on their computers. As long as both your mobile device and computer have the same Google account, you can go ahead and search for the location in the Google Maps web. Once you identify it you will see an option to “Send directions to your phone”. Click on it and a drop down menu will appear showing all the contacts synced with the account including your email. You can now choose to send the directions to the contact of your choice.

Mark All Important Addresses

Instead of always typing in addresses of places you go to often why not simply mark them on your map? You can do this easily by going to the Google Maps Menu and select “Your places”, then tap on “Change icon” and you can now choose different labels for your locations. Aside from convenience this also allows Google Maps to inform you about the traffic situation on the roads before starting your drive.

Save Maps for Offline Use

If you have ever gone on a road trip and suddenly lost your cell connection because of bad service, then you know the importance of offline maps. Tap on the button on the upper left side of you Google Maps screen and select “Offline areas”. A plus button will appear on the lower right corner of your screen. Click on it and drag the map to the area you want to download. You can then choose where you want the map to be stored in your phone.

Order Ride Sharing Services

This is one of the most recent improvements that was added to the digital map and it uses applications such as Uber and Lyft to give commuters options of getting rides. Simply type in the address of your destination and you will see a list of commute options pop up at the top of your screen. Scroll to the left past the “Bus” and “Train” icons until you see a stick figure hailing a car. Click on it and choose the ride sharing app that you would like

You do not need to be tech savvy to do all these tricks. All you need is the map and your fingers. I am sure these Google Maps tips and tricks have now given you an insight on how to use Google Maps more extensively. Now go and make the best use of them!

Source : yourstory.com

As with so many startup origin stories, Simple Contacts’ was conceived because one of its founders was annoyed.

The problem was simple. It was 2015, and Joel Wishkovsky had run out of contact lenses. He didn’t have time to physically go to the doctor, so he filmed himself doing a visual acuity test at his local drugstore, sent it to an ophthalmologist friend, and got a prescription a few minutes later. It was easy and eye-opening: Most of his annual visits could probably be done this way.

Then an entrepreneur-in-residence at the startup accelerator Techstars, Wishkovsky was uniquely positioned to turn an every-day annoyance into a well-funded business opportunity: Simple Contacts launched later that year, and quickly raised $2 million. Today, the company announced it has added another $8 million in Series A funding. Goodwater Capital led the round, and was joined by Justin Kan, Notation Capital, Autonomous Ventures, and Steven Cohen.

The startup's app includes a vision test, in which you read letters from their phone from a distance of 10 feet while wearing your contacts (this is filmed, to ensure instructions are followed), followed by an exam, in which the phone’s camera is positioned to check the eye for any obvious signs of infection or damage. Both videos are sent to an ophthalmologist and, if your vision remains unchanged and your eyes look healthy, your contact lenses prescription is reissued. Wishkovsky is careful to stress that this isn’t an eye exam. If your prescription has changed, you'll still need to schedule an in-person appointment. Likewise, the service won’t renew prescriptions that are more than four-years-old, so you can't opt out of IRL doctor's visits all together.

Like Uber, Lyft, and Instacart, a large part of Simple Contacts’ marketing push centers around convenience. But unlike these companies, its service is substantially cheaper than the traditional option: Simple Contacts’ vision test costs $10, while an ophthalmologist appointment can cost upwards of $100.

Making it easier to order contacts is a cool, if leaves-in-the-pool kind of problem to solve. But Wishkovsky’s ambitions are bigger. When he looks at the health care system, he sees multiple areas—including birth control and acne medication prescriptions—that unnecessarily require an in-person doctor’s visit. The plan is to use the funds to build up the contact lens business, and then “go into other verticals.”

Source : fortune.com

How would you like Google Fiber-like internet speeds delivered over your home phone line?

That's the promise of G.Fast. It's a new technology that can deliver blazing fast internet over the wires you already have in your home. For many, it will be the first time they'll have more than one choice for broadband.

There are still a lot of questions surrounding G.Fast: When will it be available? Who will be able to get it? And how much will it cost?

But on Monday, one crucial question was answered: How fast will it be? Very.

Israeli chipmaker Sckipio announced a new G.Fast solution that can deliver both upload and download speeds 750 megabits per second. That's 50 times faster than the broadband that you probably have coming into your home right now.

But soon even that will seem slow. The next generation of chips that could come within another year will provide double that speed for both upload and download, Sckipio said. That's 1.5 gigabits per second -- faster than anything Google Fiber offers today.

Though demonstrations of G.Fast have previously shown the technology to be capable of 750 megabit download speeds, upload speeds were significantly slower than that.

Equal upload and download speeds are becoming increasingly important, as new technologies require increasingly fast upload bandwidth. Uploading 4K videos, using virtual reality or playing video games all require super-fast upload speeds to function properly.

AT&T (TTech30) has expressed significant interest in deploying G.Fast, because it pairs nicely with its DirecTV satellite TV service. Many customers of DirecTV still need to buy internet from their local cable company, which is expensive, or DSL internet over their phone line, which is slow.

G.Fast works just as well over coaxial cables as it does over telephone lines. Since AT&T inherited a huge amount of cable infrastructure with DirecTV (cables connect your satellite dish to your television), it wouldn't be too hard or expensive to connect those cables with AT&T's fiberoptic cable service in your neighborhood.

That means some day in the future, DirecTV could become a TV and internet service provider, powered by G.fast. AT&T hasn't given a timeline, however, for G.Fast's launch.

Sckipio says the G.Fast technology will debut in the United States later this year. It won't be available everywhere immediately, but Sckipio said a single phone company could roll it out to the entire country in just four years.

Phone companies are excited about G.Fast, because it allows them do deliver super-fast speeds without having to dig up holes in your yard to do it. Or, if you live in an apartment building, they can use the existing infrastructure to deliver fast speeds without having to rewire the entire building.

Multi-dwelling units like apartments are a particularly attractive target for phone companies. Many of those apartments are currently served by DSL Internet over phone lines. But that old technology is dreadfully inefficient: DSL can lose up to 90% of its speed by the time it gets to your modem. G.Fast loses just 5% to 10% during the same trip.

It also solves a problem of deploying fiberoptic cables everywhere, which was previously the only way to get super-fast internet speeds to customers. Bringing fiber to homes is expensive and time consuming (and sometimes requires a company to dig up your yard). Bringing fiber from the street to just to one home can cost $100,000, according to Sckipio.

By comparison, the boxes on the street that need to be installed to power G.Fast cost about $70,000. And the cost of bringing that to your home is $0, since it connects to the phone lines already installed in your house or apartment.

Source : cnn.com

In general, social interaction helps people create and foster relationships. Although, as social networks have expanded over the past decade, their downsides have become apparent. Connecting virtually can lead to a decline in face-to-face relationships and meaningful activities, a sedentary lifestyle, internet addiction and low self-esteem.

The average Facebook user spends almost an hour on the platform every day, and a recent Deloitte study revealed that the first thing many smartphone owners do when they wake up is open their social media apps.

study co-authored by researchers from Yale University and the University of California, San Diego, uncovered how Facebook use influences a person’s well-being. Analyzing data from 5,208 adults over a two-year period, the researchers found that the average Facebook user’s well-being over declined time.

Over the two-year period, the researchers collected data in three waves. Each time, they measured a person’s well-being -- based on factors such as life satisfaction, self-reported mental and physical health and body mass index. They compared that data to each person’s Facebook usage, taking note of when respondents liked others’ posts, created posts and clicked on links.

Also, to help paint a picture of a respondent’s real-world (not online) social network and compare it to that person’s Facebook usage, the researchers asked respondents to name up to four friends with whom they discuss important topics and up to four friends with whom they spend their free time.

Nothing beats an in-person social relationship, the researchers found. Real-world relationships were positively associated with a person’s overall well-being, while Facebook interactions were negatively associated with overall well-being. And, while the researchers expected the action of liking others’ Facebook posts to have the strongest negative impact on one’s well-being (because it initiates social comparison), they found that all three actions (clicking on links, liking others’ content and creating posts) were similarly associated with diminished well-being.

Overall, the co-authors found that the decline of one’s well-being is a product of not just the quality of their social media interactions, but the quantity of them (time spent on them) as well.

Social networking companies have recognized the opportunity for them to foster valuable, healthy, offline connections. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg published a letter in February 2017 describing his vision for Facebook as a platform that builds real-life support systems. Tinder has recently developed new products within its app to encourage users to meet in person.

“While screen time in general can be problematic, the tricky thing about social media is that while we are using it, we get the impression that we are engaging in meaningful social interaction,” co-authors Holly B. Shakya and Nicholas A. Christakis write in Harvard Business Review. “Our results suggest that the nature and quality of this sort of connection is no substitute for the real world interaction we need for a healthy life.”

Source: entrepreneur.com

The role of a leader is paramount to a team.

Imagine an orchestra that has all the best musicians in the world except a conductor. Though every member can play perfectly on their own, if they come together, they will only produce incompatible melody; an orchestra can only create harmonious music when it is led by a conductor.

In fact, the same situation is applied to every community. If a company does not run with a leader, chaos happens: no deadline is set to urge the members, different people shout different voices, the company is blinded without a clear goal.

All of these reveal a pure fact: a leader is essential to a team to run smoothly and effectively. A leader is important, as he or she will help the community to over-see the situation and make the best decision. Only by this, the resources of a team can be allocated efficiently.

If you are currently at the position of leading a team, you should give some credits to yourself, as you play an important role. And in order to nail this role, you may want to study some theories about leadership, and lead your teammates to perform at their best.

To start with, you may want to know which level of leadership you are currently at.

Level 5 leadership from Harvard Business Review

The concept of Level 5 leadership was first introduced by a business consultant, Jim Collins. His concept was later published in a Harvard Business Review article.

The concept of Level 5 leadership began with a study conducted in 1996. In the study, Collins studied 1,435 successful companies, and he distinguished 11 truly great ones from others. Collins discovered that these 11 companies were great as they were led by what he called “level 5” leaders.

The level 5 leaders, according to Collins, possess humility and compassion for the company.

Now, you may have a look at this hierarchy of leadership:

Level 1: Highly Capable Individual

At this level, you possess the knowledge and skill that enable you to excel your work.

Level 2: Contributing Team Member

At level 2, you contribute your knowledge and skill to the success of the company. In other words, you work productively with other people in your company.

Level 3: Competent Manager

At this stage, you are able to organise your team effectively to achieve goals.

Level 4: Effective Leader

Here you are able to stimulate a department to meet performance objectives and achieve a vision.

Level 5: Great Leader

At the top level, you possess all the qualities of the previous levels, plus you harbour a unique blend of humility and will of true greatness.

It is always a good idea for you to constantly reflect on your leadership.

If you desire to climb up the ladder, and reach a higher level of leadership, you may find it helpful to study some core leadership theories.

In the following part, we would like to introduce you to four basic, yet essential, leadership theories.

Core Leadership Theories

Trait Theories: What are the traits that make a great leader?

As suggested by the name, the Trait Leadership Theory offers us a tool to distinguish the traits that are commonly possessed by great leaders.

Dr. Gordon Allport, a psychologist, is one of the most famous promoter of the theory.

In a nutshell, the Trait Leadership Theory is founded on the belief that all great leaders possess intrinsic traits that make them a great leader; in other words, a leader is born, not made.


With this belief, the Trait Leadership Theory focuses on analysing the mental, physical and social traits of great leaders in order to understand the combination of traits shared among great leaders.

Some of these traits include [1]:

  • Adaptable to situations
  • Cooperative
  • Decisive
  • Self-confident
  • Tolerate of stress

From here, we can see the Trait Leadership Theory tells us not only intelligence or skills account for a great leader, but the personal traits are also important indicators.

This theory can help your leadership, as by understanding the traits of a great leader, you will be able to spot out any potential leader in your team. They are competent candidates who are worth of your cultivation; they are also capable of higher workload. In this light, this theory helps you allocate your man resource more efficiently.

However, the Trait Leadership Theory has its shortfalls. One should be reminded that the theory was developed in 1930s. During that period of time, any practice of personality measurement was still immature. In other words, one may argue that the studies of the traits are not accurate. Besides, in Gordon Allport’s study, the samples of the study were average managers, not “great leaders”. For that, one may argue the traits are not representative enough.

Despite these shortfalls, the value of the Trait Leadership Theory lies in the fact that it is one of the first theories that combine leadership study and psychology; it also founded later theories of leadership, with Behavioral Theory being one of them, which we are going to talk about in the next section.


Behavioral Theory: What does a great leader do?

Different from the Trait Leadership Theory, the Behavioral Theory describes leadership in terms of their behaviors, instead of their physical or mental traits.

The Behavioral Theory believes that great leadership is a result of effective role behaviors. In this light, we can say that by learning the effective behaviors, everyone can be a great leader: a great leader is made, not born.

In 1930s, one of the scholars in this domain of study, Kurt Lewin, divided the leader’s behaviors into three types. They are:

Autocratic Leader

The autocratic leaders make decision without consulting their teammates. Their behaviors are considered appropriate when it requires quick decision making, and when there is no need for team agreement for a successful outcome.

Democratic Leader

Contrary to the autocratic leaders, democratic leaders allow input from their teammates. This style of leadership is especially important when team agreement is significant. However, it should be noted that it is difficult to manage if there are too many different perspectives and ideas offered by teammates.

Laissez-faire Leader

Laissez-faire leaders allow their teammates to make many decisions. This style of leadership is considered appropriate when the team is capable, is motivated, and is able to run without close supervision. However, sometimes, Laissez-faire leaders may be considered languid by their teammates.

As a matter of fact, in the field of the Behavioral Theory, many studies were done to find which style is the best in leading a community. For example, in 1999, Naylor had conducted a systematic comparison between autocratic and democratic leading behaviors.

The implication of the Behavioral Theory to you as a leader is that you can learn the behaviors of great leaders, and try to apply in your work field.


However, while the Behavioral Theory analyses the great leaders’ behaviors, which is an aspect not covered by the Trait Leadership Theory, it still misses analysing an important element: the context in which the leaders exist.

The next theory we are going to introduce covers the aspect that the Behavioral Theory has not yet covered.

Contingency Theory: What is the type of leadership this context requires?

The Contingency Theory studies which style of leadership is best suited for a particular working context.

This theory believes there is no single leadership that is appropriate in all situations. That is to say, success is dependent on several variables, including the leadership style, the qualities of the teammates, and the situational features (Charry, 2012). Using the words of Lamb (2013), the Contingency Theory states that the effective leadership depends on a balance between the leader’s styles and that demanded by the situation.

To get a sense about what the Contingency Theory is about, we may look at two of the models proposed by scholars in this field.

Fiedler Model

The Fiedler Model was proposed in 1960s by Fred Fiedler, a scientist studying leadership. The Fiedler Model states that effective leadership is dependent on two factors: the leader’s leadership style, and the power of control given to the leader by the situation. The model introduces three steps to determine these two factors:

  • Identifying the leadership style
  • Defining the situation
  • Matching the leader and the situation

Cognitive Resource Theory

The Cognitive Resource Theory was proposed by Fred Fredier and Joe Garcia in 1987. It is a refinement of the Fiedler Model. The Cognitive Resource Theory believes that stress unfavorably affects one’s leadership. The leader’s intelligence and experience are two elements that overcome the negative effect of stress. The theory tells us that in a low-stress situation, the leader’s intelligence is more effective to overcome stress; meanwhile, in a high-stress situation, the leader’s experience is more effective to overcome stress.


Power-and-Influence Theory: How should a leader make the best use of power and influence?

The final theory we would like to introduce to you is the Power-and-Influence Theory. This theory takes a different approach from the above three theories. This theory focuses on analysing how a leader can encourage his or her teammates to work by using his or her power and influence.

To let you understand more about the theories that fall under the Power-and-Influence Theory, we would like to introduce two models.

French and Raven’s Five Forms of Power

This model was proposed by French and Raven in 1959. It introduces five forms of power that account for the influence of a leader. These five forms of power include:

  • Legitimate: the formal right to make command
  • Reward: the ability to compensate others
  • Coercive: the ability to punish others
  • Referent: the personal attractiveness
  • Expert: the knowledge and skills in the field

The implication of this model is that if you hope to increase your power and influence over your teammates, you are encouraged to improve one of the above domains. According to French and Raven, it is better to invest the leader’s power on Referent and on Expert. Out of the two domains, it is better to invest one’s power on Expert, as it is about the knowledge and skill in the job field, which is the most legitimate source of power.

Transactional Theory

This model is founded on the assumption that all people seek pleasurable experience, and avoid un-pleasurable experience. As a result, people are inclined to align themselves with those who can add to their values.


This model thus aims to teach you how to work on the human tendency, and form a mutually beneficial relation with the teammates, and encourage them to fulfil your command.

A Great Leader Should Know How To Motivate The Team As Well

After reading some core theories in the study of leadership, now we would like to demonstrate to you how to apply a leadership theory, and use it to motivate your teammates.

Two-Factor Theory

Two-Factor Theory was proposed by Frederick Herzberg in 1950s. It aims to analyse the causes of workers’ motivation and satisfaction in work.

In his study, Herzberg analysed 200 accountants and engineers who were asked about their positive and negative feelings about their work. Herzberg concluded that there are two factors governing workers’ sense of motivation and satisfaction in work.

The first factor is Motivator Factors. These are the factors which increase workers’ satisfaction and motivation. Examples of these include the enjoyment of work, and career progression.

The second factor is Hygiene Factors. These are the factors that could cause dissatisfaction when they are absent. For example, the company’s travel allowance may be one Hygiene Factor, as if it is suspended, workers may feel dissatisfied.

Even though the above two factors seem similar, Herzberg pointed out that they are different in the sense that the absence of Motivator Factors does not necessarily cause dissatisfaction, while the absence of Hygiene Factors causes dissatisfaction.

Application to your workplace

The Two-Factor Theory tells us that there are methods to improve employees’ motivation of work. And the way to do so is to improve the Motivator Factors, and to secure the Hygiene Factors.

In this light, you should first have a clear picture about the situation of your community, such as the policies, the benefits, and the facilities of your company.


Then, in order to improve your teammates’ motivation, you should try to improve the Motivator Factors. For example, if you recognise the modernist architecture of your office motivates your teammates to work, you can enlarge the area that is built by this architectural style.

In addition to the Motivator Factors, you are also reminded to secure the Hygiene Factors. For example, if you recognise that your teammates will be dissatisfied if the air-conditioning is broken down, then you may want to allocate more resource to the maintenance of your office’s air-conditioners.

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

The Hierarchy of Needs theory was introduced by psychologist Abraham Maslow through his paper “A Theory of Human Motivation” in 1943. The key of the theory is that individual’s basic needs must be satisfied before the other higher needs are motivated to achieve.

According to Maslow, there are basically 5 levels of the hierarchy:

The first level is Physiological. It is the lowest level of needs, such as food, water and shelter. These needs are the most basic needs that a person must need to survive.

The second level is Safety. It included personal and financial security, as well as health and wellbeing. Some common examples are freedom from war, violence, job security and work safety.

The third level is belongingness. It represents the needs for friendship, relationships and family.

The fourth level is esteem. Esteem means the need for the person to feel confident, and be respected by others. Approval of families and friends, recognition and high status are some examples belong to esteem.


The fifth level is self-actualization. It is the highest level of all the other needs. It is the desire to achieve as much as you can and become the most you can be. It included achievements in education, religion, personal growth and advancement.

Maslow proposed that it is pointless to achieve or even aware of lofty goals like religion and personal growth when you are dying of starvation or facing life threat.

Application to the workplace

The Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs can be applied to workplace for boosting productivity.

The founder of the Joie de Vivre hotel chain and head of Hospitality at Airbnb, Chip Conley, transformed his business through the uses of the theory.

He gathered a group of 8 housekeepers and asked if someone from Mars came down and saw them doing as a housekeeper, what would those people call them. The housekeepers turnout came up with “The Serenity Sisters”, “The Clutter Busters” and “The Peace of Mind Police”.

This exercise let the housekeepers understood their own importance with a thought that they were creating a shelter for traveler instead of simply cleaning a room. Knowing the value of self, they felt respected and gained motivation to work harder. As a result, efficiency was highly lifted.

There are no denies there are so much advantages by attaining the highest level of the Hierarchy of Needs. Yet, before enjoying the benefits that the achievement of the highest needs brings you, it is important to ensure the lower needs are being satisfied. If the workers are lack of shelter, short of time to focus on family and friends, having financial instability, they can hardly realize their own value and make the most out of them.

Source : lifehack.org

YouTube TV is officially happening. Google (GOOG, GOOGL) on Wednesday announced that the world’s largest video sharing website is getting a live TV streaming service that will let you watch 40 channels at launch, including the five major broadcast stations, with more coming in the future.

The $35 per month service, which launches in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco Bay Area, Chicago and Philadelphia with other regions to follow, will let you stream ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC and the CW. That’s a coup for Google, as competing services like Dish’s (DISH) Sling TV and Sony’s (SNE) PlayStation Vue either offer only some of or none of those broadcasters.

Outside of those channels, you’ll get Fox Sports and its FS1 and FS2 affiliates, ESPN and its various offshoots, CBS and NBC’s sports channels … you know what, let’s just say there are a bunch of sports networks. There’s also Syfy, Bravo, FX and FXX, E, Disney Channel, Fox News, MSNBC and CNBC and a slew of others.

YouTube TV channels.
YouTube TV is launching with 40 channels, but will add more in the coming future.

Google says it’s also adding AMC, BBC America, IFC, Sundance, We tv and BBC World News in the near future. You’ll also have the option to add on Showtime and other channels for an added fee. You’ll get access to YouTube Red Originals as part of the standard package. Interestingly, Google doesn’t make any mention of adding HBO to the mix.

YouTube TV will include six user accounts, as well as a cloud-based DVR with unlimited storage. Which means you can save every episode of “Big Bang Theory” for when you have guests over and want a not-so-subtle way of chasing them out at the end of the night.

Beyond TV

Naturally, you’ll be able to stream YouTube TV through your browser on your desktop or laptop, as well as your smartphone or tablet. Google is also throwing in a free Chromecast after your first monthly payment, so you’ll be able to stream your shows to your big-screen TV when you want to relax on the couch and not have to hold your phone or laptop.

With its $35 price tag, Google immediately undercuts Sony’s PlayStation Vue, which starts at $39 per month. Sony’s offering, however, gets you more than 45 channels for that extra $4. Sling TV, meanwhile, starts at $20 per month for 30 channels, but gives you 45 if you jump to the $25 option.

Still, with its brand recognition and Google’s massive reach, YouTube TV could put a hurting on Vue and Sling TV.

Naturally, I’m taking it upon myself to test YouTube TV for you, dear reader, by locking myself in an office for the rest of the day and watching TV. The sacrifices I make for you people.

Source : yahoo.com

Wednesday, 12 April 2017 08:10

Are Social Networks Search Engines?

Did you know that 37% of all consumers say they use Social Media to find out about products/services?

The big question: Are social networks search engines?

Social Media is not just a place where you can connect with potential customers. Each Social Network now has its own search functionality which is a powerful tools which every business should be utilising.

If you’re new to Social Media, or new to the concept of Social Media Optimisation, and the ability to search, and be found inside of Social, here is a breakdown of each social network, their search functionality and best practices.


Facebook are currently testing a new and exciting local search feature that is said to rival the likes of Google Maps and Foursquare. Facebook users will be able to look at recommendations of places in a location near them.

Facebook said the following:

“We’re testing a new way to discover where to go and what to do around you.”

Another great search feature inside of Facebook is Facebook’s Graph Search. You’re probably thinking “I thought this had been removed”. It hasn’t. Well, not entirely.

Facebook Graph Search is still available, but it is hidden. You can use the simple search features but to get the more advanced search functionality, you must search a long-tail keyword and when the results appear, click “see more” to get full access.

If a potential customer is trying to find a business through keywords around your industry, make sure that the keywords are in the posts you share on Facebook, in your description, bio and that you also link back to your website.

If you are going to use Facebook to promote your business, don’t get disheartened by the lack of “reach”. Keep engaging on a regular basis, and look at ways to increase your following by running live webinars, events and competitions.


As you probably know, Twitter is my favourite social network. I love Twitter not just because of the engagement I get, but because of its search functionality and the features available to hone in on what’s important.

Using Twitter’s Advanced Search

Advanced search is available when you’re logged into your Twitter account so that you can tailor search results to specific date ranges, people and more. This makes it easier to find specific Tweets about your industry.

  1. Enter your search into the search bar on twitter.com.
  2. At the top of your results page, click More options and then click Advanced search.
  3. Fill in the appropriate fields to refine your search results
  4. Click Search to see your results.

You can refine your advanced search by tweets containing certain words, phrases and hashtags. You can also filter based on language used, tweets from specific users and places as well as by dates.

To make sure you can be found via a potential customers refined search, include your location on your Twitter profile, have a description and a link back to your website. Also use your specific niche keywords for your business in your tweets so that if someone searches for that keyword, it will bring your business up.

Top Tip: Create a “Twitter List” of influencers in your industry so that you can hone in on what’s important. You should also consider using the advanced search feature to find potential customers talk about your business, or products/services that you are currently marketing online.


You might look at Pinterest and think whether it is a social network you should be using. The answer is YES.

Pinterest has an amazing search functionality, and using Pinterest to upload visuals will give you a great Google Image ranking, if done correctly.

I recently wrote an article about the latest Pinterest updates around search which you can read here.

Best Practice


Inside of Pinterest, the use of keywords is crucial. You should have all relevant keywords in your Pinterest bio, the descriptions of pins. You should also make sure that you are using a call-to-action in the description of your pins. Having your keywords in the descriptions of your boards will make them more “searchable” but keep it simple e.g. Social Media Tips.


When creating a board, use a cover image that matches the overall feel of your brand, and colour scheme.


80% of pins are re-pins. If you are going to re-pin, do make sure that you only openly re-pin pins that are relevant to your business, and your target market. For consistency, and overall brand awareness, this is important as you do not want to confuse your community.

Linking Back To Your Website

All of your pins, regardless of whether they are a re-pin should link back to your website.

Top Tip: If you are a business, switch to a Pinterest Business Account so that you can take advantage of rich pins. Rich Pins are Pins that include extra information right on the Pin itself. There are 6 types of Rich Pins: app, movie, recipe, article, product and place.


Did you know that 30% of internet users are now on Instagram?

Instagram has been the social network of 2017, with the introduction of slideshow images, and Instagram Stories but, is Instagram a search engine? Yes, it is.

You can now use Instagram to search for a specific person’s followers, and who they are following through a search bar feature. This is a great way for you to find potential customers when looking at a competitor’s followers.

Instagram is known as the social network which relies heavily on searching through hashtags to find a user, image or video (apart from the above feature).

Best Practices

Use Relevant Hashtags

To be found inside of Instagram’s search engine, you need to be using hashtags, and I don’t just mean the odd one or two. You need to be using between 10–20 hashtags per post, and these hashtags need to be relevant to your business.

Quality Photos

For a potential customer to “like” one of your photos, you need to be using hashtags, as well as great quality images. Make sure that you use a tool like Snapseed to add a filter to your images.

Create Video’s Using Instagram Stories Then Post On Your Newsfeed

Use Instagram stories to film a real-time video. Make sure that you also link back to your website inside of the video and then take the video and put it on your Instagram account for those who may have missed your story.


YouTube is the world’s second largest search engine. 300 hours of video is uploaded to YouTube every minute so if you aren’t already utilising YouTube’s large audience, you might be missing out on potential sales for your business.

When creating a video, consider the following:


You have the option to add a “subscribe” button, a link to a verified website and also a “suggested video”. Use these options to re-direct traffic back to your website, or to give your viewer a chance to get to know your business better by watching another video, and subscribing.

Select A Language

This is extremely important if you are targeting a location which speaks a certain language.

Create Playlists

A great way to keep your viewer engaged, and to be better found inside of YouTube is to create a playlist based on your videos.

Add a date

When searching inside of YouTube, you can search by date so make sure that all of your video’s have a date.

Create Your Unique URL

As you would for your Facebook Page, make sure that you create your own unique URL.

Don’t forget to add a description to every single video you upload including your business keywords, as well as Social Media Links, and where your viewer can find more information about your business.


Google+ is very different to all of the above social networks and that is because that although it isn’t a search engine, uploading all of your blogs and content rich in keywords will actually give you the chance to rank on the first page of Google for those keywords BECAUSE of the Google+ post.

This is the only reason I use Google+, and how Google actually picked up one of my articles, and share it with their 3M+ audience inside of the Google+ social layer.

So to answer the question of whether social networks are search engines; yes, and I hope that the above will help you better search, and be found inside of each social network.


On the 13th April I will be holding a BRAND NEW and EXCLUSIVE webinar on Social Media, and creating images that drive engagement, traffic and sales.

Click Here to Sign up!

Source : business2community.com

Could Amazon overtake Google as the world’s premier search engine? It’s possible, especially when you take into account the dominance of their online market and what that could do for their brand.

We know that many people go straight to Amazon when searching for products on the online market, but did you know that this could soon give the tech giant the ability to overtake Google as the world’s premier search engine?

Amazon could overtake Google, see how on Edgy LabsCLICK TO TWEET

Believe it or not, its true, and the key is in Amazon’s proprietary search engine algorithm. This engine provides sellers with an unprecedented amount of tools to ensure that their product is seen by the people that need to see it, and because of this we may forget all about the prospect of ‘Googling it’ when we need to search for a thing on the internet.

To understand how Amazon could do this, I’ve separated the process into three easy steps:

Step #1: Leverage the Advantages of the Online Market

The first step is something that can be observed in the here and now by taking a look at site statistics such as those hosted by Bloomreach. If you want to dominate the online market, then you need to be the ‘go-to’ site for anyone searching for any kind of product, and with 55% of product searches starting with Amazon, they are easily the ‘go-to’ site for online shopping.

But with so many search engines out there, how can you ensure that your service is the one that people will choose? The answer is simple: Make your search engine results page, or SERP, capable of finding the right product in the right category every time. Oh, and you’ll want to make sure that sellers understand how to optimize their product titles, descriptions and images to compete for the top spot in the SERP, like so.

Amazon gives its sellers a comfortable level of options, making it easy to stay with Amazon once you have transitioned over to hosting your product there. By establishing themselves as the de-facto default online marketplace, Amazon has the ability to refine their category trees in ways that change how we define products in the marketplace. If Amazon becomes the dominant search engine, this means that how people define/name products in order to fit into Amazon’s categories may also change how we describe these products, and therefore they can change how we conceptualize them. This means that, instead of leveling the playing field between them and their competitors, Amazon is becoming the playing field itself.

The advantage here is worth thinking about.

Consider the philosophy of Plato’s chair: there are practically endless iterations of a chair, but there is only one definition. Amazon’s categorization of products could push companies to fit those categories, thereby redefining where we look for certain products.

If you can control the information behind a marketplace, you can control the marketplace, meaning that step one is easily the most important for Amazon as they push toward search engine dominance. That being said, the company can hardly rest on their laurels having dominated search engines with their SERP, and to achieve true dominance over the internet searches of the future they will have to leave their comfort zone and venture away from the purely virtual marketplace into the familiar brick and mortar of a physical storefront.

Step #2: Brick and Mortar not Optional

To the uninitiated, brick and mortar stores are projected to be obsolete very soon. For those in the know, however, these stores are crucial elements to giving customers relevant shopping options.

Ok, so maybe they are really just using technology to update the old pick-up or delivery option, but anyone who denies the significance of that option is missing out on an important part of retail’s future. While it may sound convenient to have everything sent to your home, it isn’t always the most effective option, logistically speaking.

Let me give you an example of what I mean: Using their existing warehouse infrastructure, Amazon could utilize warehouse distribution locations to send drones out for home delivery. Alternatively, they could turn those locations into optimized store fronts that have the ability to give consumers the option to pick up items without having to wait for shipping. By leveraging their existing infrastructures, Amazon can deliver more value, relevant products, and options to their customers at costs that allow them to compete with any storefront, virtual or not.

But wait, there’s more! Amazon’s forays into physical bookstores and grocery stores show how those distribution centers could easily be converted into shops that sport a fancy AR interface instead of cashiers, essentially hiding a store inside of a distribution center. You might enter the center to buy 60 orders of paper clips for the office, but if your AR display showed you a rare deal on some beef jerky that they have overstocked, could you really pass up the chance to leave the store with a tasty new bonus? Maybe you could, but I sure couldn’t.

What does this have to do with the SERP? Simply put, everything you do in such a warehouse would be run through their search engine algorithm, meaning that the relevance of the search engine results could translate directly into the fluidity of whatever products are both in stock and relevant to local consumers. In the previous example it is likely that your previous searches for beef jerky let the local Amazon team know that you would be receptive to buy their overstock, so the moment you search for a product that they know is available at the local warehouse, they knew that you might want to spring for the extra snack. That’s good for the beef jerky supplier, and it totally justifies their switch from advertising with Google to advertising with Amazon.

Step #3: Prepare for the Future

Despite the current trend, Amazon will probably not replace Google for a while yet, but if it does happen then it will depend on a factor that has become relatively widespread since the advent of the Internet of Things: The Digital Assistant.
The tech giants all have their assistants, but Amazon’s Alexa is unique in that it offers exclusive Prime deals to its users. It’s easy to use, as well; simply press a button and tell Alexa what you want for an easy shopping experience. With your information stored within the device, Alexa can place the orders on your say-so, giving Amazon the edge in providing better conversion rates to their suppliers. After all, it is much easier to make a sale if the consumer merely has to ask for it, and if Alexa provides higher conversion rates then suppliers will flock to Amazon’s banner.

Of course, the other tech giants aren’t going to be found sitting on their hands. Don’t discount Google’s Assistant, or Apple’s Siri and their potential to match or even outdo Alexa’s marketing abilities with similar capabilities or greater convenience. If a certain assistant becomes the dominant force in the field, it won’t matter what kind of deals Alexa is bringing to the table; nobody will be listening to those deals, after all.
Amazon is on the cusp of something great, but it isn’t guaranteed. As always, Edgy Labs will be keeping an eye on the situation and keeping you apprised.

What do you think? How could Amazon overtake Google as the world’s go-to search engine?

Source : edgylabs.com

Drew Barrymore, left, and Liv Hewson at the premiere of Santa Clarita Diet, a Netflix original. Photo: Richard Shotwell

Australians love a good Netflix binge, especially from the comfort of their own couch. In fact with close to 6 million subscribers, the entertainment service's uptake has been nothing short of phenomenal. Many avid couch potatoes also tune into Stan, the homegrown competitor to Netflix which has its own library of unique titles from home and abroad to enjoy.

When you're watching streaming movies or TV from home on your broadband connection, many of which now run to unlimited data, binging on Netflix or Stan isn't a concern. Monthly subscriptions are cheap and your data is unlimited anyway, so all you need to concern yourself with is the provision of popcorn.

However, there are times when those binges spill out of homes and on to our mobiles or tablets. All it takes is a cliffhanger ending plus the drudgery of a peak-hour trawl on public transport to tip us over the edge.

What you may not realise is watching just a handful of episodes on-the-go can quickly become expensive for your mobile bill. One episode of House of Cards streaming on the standard definition setting will chew through around 1GB of data.

Even if you're on a mobile plan with a high data quota, all it takes is getting carried away by a compelling plot (or a dull train trip) and you could be in trouble.

Watch four or five episodes in one month, along with checking emails, Facebook activity and browsing, and you're looking down the barrel of excess data fees. These are usually $10 per extra gigabyte on top of your base plan. In Netflix terms, that's $10 extra for many TV episodes if you're already over quota.

Australians wasted $86 million on excess data charges last year and watching videos is the most data-hungry activity you can engage in.

So how can you keep catching up on your favourite series without blowing out your phone bill? All it takes is a little bit of forward planning, by using the inbuilt offline viewing capabilities of Netflix and Stan.

A finder.com.au survey suggests one in six Aussies don't know what offline viewing is and most aren't interested in using it.

Yet it can save you a substantial amount of money and give you access to your favourite shows in places where there's no reception, such as on a plane.

A substantial quantity of the Netflix and Stan streaming libraries are available to download and watch later without an Internet connection.

For both if you're watching on a smartphone or tablet there's a little icon to "download now and watch offline later". This means you can download shows using your home Wi-Fi, and catch the episode later without an internet connection and, critically, without chewing up your mobile data. You won't see the icons if you're watching on a TV or laptop, however, as offline playback is purely there for mobile devices running iOS or Android.

Offline storage is based on the storage capabilities of your device, and you are limited to just a few devices you can download content to.

Still, if you're a parent who plays cartoons from YouTube for your kids, offline playback gives you a free and easy way to keep them entertained, whether it's for five minutes of peace or a lengthy car trip. It's equally great for travelling – either because you're on a budget airline with no entertainment or because you're not a fan of the inflight choices on offer. Even if you just use it for your daily commute, it allows you to access streaming services without being reliant on the quality of the mobile signal, all while saving yourself potentially hundreds of dollars in excess usage fees.

Alex Kidman is tech & telco editor of finder.com.au.

Source : smh.com.au

The iPhone 6 iOS 10.3.1 update has replaced iOS 10.3 and today we want to walk iPhone 6 users through the most important things to know about the iOS 10.3.1 update as we push into the month of April.

In late March, Apple pulled its milestone iOS 10.3 update out of beta and released it for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch models capable of running iOS 10. iOS 10.3 lasted a whole week.

As expected, Apple’s rolled out an iOS 10.3.1 update to the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. The update is much smaller than iOS 10.3 if you’re coming to it from the previous version of iOS 10.

If you’re coming to iOS 10.3.1 from iOS 10.3, expect a pretty small download, a few MB. If you’re coming from something older like iOS 10.2.1 or iOS 9, your iPhone 6’s iOS 10.3.1 update will be much bigger. You’ll get everything from the previous iOS updates baked in.

This roundup includes our updated impressions of the software, some tips to help you get the most out of iOS 10.3.1, and a look at iPhone 6 iOS 10.3.1 problems.

We’ll continue to update this page as we push away from the release date so check back for regular changes.

iPhone 6 iOS 10.3.1 Update: Impressions & Performance

iPhone 6 iOS 10.3.1 Update: Impressions & Performance

You Should Prepare for Your iOS 10.3.1 Update

 You Should Prepare for Your iOS 10.3.1 Update

iPhone 6 iOS 10.3.1 Problems

iPhone 6 iOS 10.3.1 Problems

How to Fix iPhone 6 iOS 10.3.1 Problems

How to Fix iPhone 6 iOS 10.3.1 Problems

You Can Downgrade to iOS 10.2.1 or iOS 10.3

You Can Downgrade to iOS 10.2.1 or iOS 10.3

iOS 10.3.1 Jailbreak MIA

iOS 10.3.1 Jailbreak MIA

iOS 10.3.1: What's New

iOS 10.3.1: What's New

Clips App Now Available

Clips App Now Available

iPhone 6 iOS 10.3.2 Update Confirmed

iPhone 6 iOS 10.3.2 Update Confirmed

How to Try iOS 10.3.2 Right Now

How to Try iOS 10.3.2 Right Now

If you want to get onto the newer version of iOS 10.3, you can do that right now, even if you aren't a paid developer. 

Apple's released an early version of the iPhone 6's iOS 10.3.2 update and its available to those with a developer account and anyone with an Apple ID. If you want to try the iOS 10.3.2 update for free you'll need to signup for the Beta Software Program.

While the iOS 10.3.2 beta is a tempting install, most of you will probably want to avoid the early version of Apple's next iOS 10 upgrade. 

This is early software and early software is buggy. Testers have already found several bugs lurking in the first iOS 10.3.2 beta. 

If you do decide to try the iOS 10.3.2 beta make sure you pass along any bugs you find to Apple. That way, it can improve the final version of the iPhone 6's software. 

Source : gottabemobile.com 


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