Facebook likes Dislike buttons, Snapchat adds new features, Project Morpheus morphs into PlayStation VR, Square and Twitter help you donate to politicians, and Rockstar Games hates the BBC.
Facebook Is Adding a Dislike Button
Facebook will soon have a Dislike button to sit alongside its ubiquitous Like button. Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the news during a Q&A session at Facebook HQ. Facebook has apparently been working on a Dislike button for some time, and it’s “very close” to being rolled out.
According to Business Insider, Zuckerberg stated, “People have asked about the dislike button for many years. Probably hundreds of people have asked about this, and today is a special day because today is the day that I actually get to say we are working on it, and are very close to shipping a test of it”.
However, this may not be a Dislike button in the sense we’re all imagining. Zuckerberg made it very clear he doesn’t want Facebook to devolve into upvotes and downvotes, suggesting this will be more about expressing empathy. Because we really do need an alternative to Liking a status update about someone passing away, being ill, or getting divorced.
Snapchat Launches Paid Replays & Lenses
Snapchat has released an update to its apps, adding the option to pay to replay Snaps, a new feature called Lenses, and virtual Trophies. All of which should help Snapchat grow even bigger and make some money in the process. Which is an essential step for any popular free app.
Snapchat Replays are available to all U.S. users willing to pay for the privilege. Paying 99 cents buys you three replays of individual Snaps, but you can only replay each one once. Users have been able to replay one Snap every day for a couple of years, but this monetizes the whole thing.
Lenses is a way of augmenting selfies being taken through Snapchat. Users bored of regular ol’ selfies can choose filters to distort or age their faces, or add animations and/or sound to turn them into something else altogether.
Trophies rewards users for using the app, awarding virtual goodies for achieving certain accomplishments. This is simply a form of gamification, which is designed to encourage users to use the app more regularly and in new ways.
Sony Teases PlayStation VR
Sony has renamed its forthcoming virtual reality headset, turning Project Morpheus into PlayStation VR. The company made the announcement during the 2015 Tokyo Game Show, and released the above video to show what it hopes the final experience will be like.
Sony executive Masayasu Ito said, “The name ‘PlayStation VR’ not only directly expresses an entirely new experience from PlayStation that allows players to feel as if they are physically inside the virtual world of a game, but it also reflects our hopes that we want our users to feel a sense of familiarity as they enjoy this amazing experience”.
Unfortunately, while the branding has been finalized, there was no word on either a release date or a price, so we still don’t know when to expect this VR hardware or whether we’ll be able to afford it. Still, PlayStation VR has got quite a ring to it, so that’s a good start.
Tweet Square Donations to Politicians
Square, one of several ways of sending money to friends, just made it easier than ever to donate to politicians, if you’re that way inclined. Square has teamed up with Twitter to enable politicians to beg their followers for more money.
Anyone gullible enough to do so simply has to reply to the tweet with their debit card number and some extra information. It will come as no surprise to learn that 12 Presidential hopefuls have already signed up to use these Cashtags.
Rockstar Games Blasts the BBC
@BBC Was Basil Brush busy? What exactly is this random, made up bollocks?
— Rockstar Games (@RockstarGames) September 15, 2015
And finally, Rockstar Games really isn’t happy with the BBC right now, as the tweet embedded above proves. The reason? The BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) has aired a docudrama called The Gamechangers, showing how the Grand Theft Auto series came into being.
The problem, at least as far as Rockstar is concerned, is that The Gamechangers bears little resemblance to fact. Making it more drama than documentary. Still, The Gamechangers is currently available to watch on iPlayer, for those either in the UK or using a VPN (Virtual Private Network).
Your Views on Today’s Tech News
Do you like the idea of a Facebook Dislike button? Would you ever pay to replay a Snapchat Snap? Are you excited at the prospect of using PlayStation VR? To which politician are you most likely to donate money? Have you watched The Gamechangers? If so, what did you think of it?
Let us know your thoughts on the Tech News of the day by posting to the comments section below. Because a healthy discussion is always welcome.
Image Credits: Geoff Livingston via Flickr