Digital Trend Update: August 18, 2016
News of Note
Instagram snatched another Snapchat feature! The newly released Instagram Stories added the ability to zoom into a video while recording, as well as the option to switch between the front and rear-facing cameras. Both features are identical to their Snapchat counterparts. Instagram received backlash from Snapchat loyalists across social following the update announcement but are yet to comment on the feud.
Snapchat’s new Discover feature has sparked an increase in users but a sharp decrease in total views, completion rates and time spent per user. As you may recall, the Discover feature is a section of the app that features videos and articles from content partners, including ESPN, BuzzFeed and Refinery29. Since the launch in June, the amount of daily users on Discovery has increased from 2 million to 3.5 million users. However, despite the upgrade to a tile-based visual, there has been a 14% decrease in views and a 6% decrease in completion rate per story. Snapchat is yet to comment on these results.
Virtual reality has entered the healthcare space. Medical students can now utilize “virtual standardized patients,” human actors that will allow students to practice their interviewing and diagnosing skills through virtual reality. Just like real patients, virtual standardized patients act emotionally and require reasoning. Surgeons and pathologists can also wield a virtual scalpel and conduct an autopsy in the new virtual surgical theater. The technology is being slowly rolled out to several top medical schools across the country.
Olympic runner, Shaunae Miller, was trending on Twitter for 24 hours following her controversial gold medal win. The Bahamian athlete dove across the finish line, beating U.S. favorite Allyson Felix by 0.07 seconds. The verdict came down to a photo finish but ultimately abided by the IOC rule, “The first athlete whose torso reaches the vertical plane of the closest edge of the finish line is the winner.” Miller received a tremendous amount of conversation across social, consisting of praise for her strategy as well as outrage from those who claimed this was an illegal maneuver.
Just for fun…
Mashable published the top 10 ways social media has impacted “old school romantic gestures.” The list includes outdated, romantic meet-cutes including love letters, mixed tapes and the ever-classic moment of John Cusack holding a boombox over his head. As we all know, these gestures have increasingly been replaced with emojis, video games and late-night text messages. The article urges millennials to put down their phones and resurrect romance for the sake of future generations.