Weekly Wrap

Another busy week in the digital world, including: Facebook's new Aquila aircraft, news on Instagram advertising, and Twitters latest growth strategy.

Facebook's Aquila Aircraft, Which Can Beam Data At 10Gb/s Using Laser Beams, Is Complete


"Earlier today, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg announced that the company had completed construction on its first, full-scale aircraft, dubbed Aquila. Facebook has talked about Aquila before—it’s essentially a solar-powered, unmanned aircraft that can beam data to the ground using lasers, while airborne. According to Zuckerberg, Aquila has a wingspan similar to a Boeing 737 (roughly 42 meters), but it weighs less than a typical car and can remain airborne for months."


Facebook now used by half of world's online users


"Good news! Birthday wishes are finally meaningless. All the birthday cards you’ve ever posted, all the tender heartfelt messages sent to loved ones, all the dates seared into your memory through years of joy, are now utterly invalidated, so we should all stop bothering and move on with our lives.

If you’re wondering who to thank from freeing us of the burden of caring about arbitrary dates, it’s Facebook. Thanks to them, the phrase “Happy Birthday!” is now a hollow shell. Why? This:"


Facebook now used by half of world's online users


"Half of the world's estimated online population now check in to the social networking giant Facebook at least once a month. Facebook said the number of people who use it at least monthly grew 13% to 1.49 billion in the three months to the end of June."


Jack Dorsey Wants to Reinvent Twitter


"Less than a month after taking the tiller as interim CEO, Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey is charting a new course.  

The famous Twitter timeline, in which tweets from everyone you follow are displayed in reverse chronological order, is no longer getting the job done, Dorsey said on an earnings call with investors Tuesday evening. And tweaks intended to help the company reach a broader user base, like instant timelines and a new home page for casual visitors, have failed."




"How can Twitter improve its sluggish growth? The company’s stock plummeted after interim chief executive Jack Dorsey said he was “not satisfied” with current user growth figures following the release of Twitter’s Q2 earnings report on Tuesday.

Twitter’s stock actually rose by 5 percent upon release of the earnings report, which included above-average revenue growth of 60 percent. However, the bump proved to be short-lived. Twitter’s shares dropped by almost 10 percent after Dorsey gave a gloomy public conference call in which he emphasised that it would “take some time” before Twitter could achieve the results that it wanted."

Facebook walking a fine line with Instagram ads


"Facebook Inc.’s earnings call lacked the drama that Twitter and Yelp created a day earlier, but it did feature a brief discussion of new ways the company might make money from Instagram."