It’s time for our weekly round-up of the latest tech news, where we cover top stories and must-know announcements within the mobile industry. Let’s get to it!
Google Play Unveils ‘Safety Section’ for Apps
Following in the footsteps of Apple’s App Tracking Transparency and App Store privacy labels, Google Play is introducing a new “safety section” that offers details on the data apps collect and share, along with other security and privacy information.
Initially announced in May, Google has now shared images of the new section’s UI as well as developer requirements. For example, developers will need to disclose whether their app uses security best practices like data encryption, what choice users have when it comes to data sharing, and if users can request their data be deleted upon uninstall.
Quick take: Google and Apple are both making a concerted effort to help users understand how apps are handling their data and take control over what developers do with that information. These steps emphasize the importance of earning — and keeping — your users’ trust.
It’s essential to not only explain why your app needs certain information during the first-time app launch or within permission prompts, but to use the information you have about users responsibly and with the intent to elevate their experience and add value. One slip up and users will either revoke permissions or uninstall.
Twitter Makes a Push for Ecommerce with New Shopping Feature
The social network announced on Wednesday that it’s testing a new feature in the US that lets users shop and purchase products through an in-app browser. The tool, called Shop Module, lets businesses highlight products on their Twitter profiles, which US users on Apple devices will be able to view as products for sale and purchase from the brand’s website.
Quick take: This is the latest in a slew of e-commerce announcements from social media networks, including Facebook, TikTok, and Snapchat. It’s interesting to note that, like many of the other announced features, Twitter isn’t charging businesses to use Shop Module. The feature is designed to increase user engagement and session times. These social media giants understand that highly engaged users = highly retained users, and that means better monetization.
Apple’s Big Fall Event Likely to Go Virtual
According to Bloomberg, Apple’s rumored decision to delay a return to in-person work signals the company’s upcoming fall event will likely also be completely virtual. Speculation says the annual event will take place in early September, with announcements for a new iPhone, iPad Mini, AirPods, and MacBooks, as well as Apple Watch upgrades.
Quick Take: The COVID-19 pandemic is not over, and as we head into fall, brands would do well to take note. Consumers are still feeling the effects of the pandemic, with a compounded sense of fatigue. So continue to show empathy and humanity in every interaction you have with your users.
Unicode Announces 36 New Emoji 👏
A draft list for a new set of emoji was announced just ahead of World Emoji day, including a melting smiley face, a low battery, a disco ball, and several new hand shapes. The new emojis likely won’t be finalized until September, and final versions should appear on devices starting in late 2021.
Quick Take: Over 6 billion emojis are sent every day.* They’ve become an essential part of how we communicate with each other online and via apps — and, used wisely, they can be a major asset for your marketing campaigns. In our emoji marketing study, some industries saw an increase in CTRs of 100x when adding emojis.