Facebook Home Launched and LinkedIn Mentions Added

Last month saw big changes and big milestones for all the major social networks, and this month harbours nothing much different, but on a smaller scale. LinkedIn are introducing mentions, and launching a new app, and Facebook have published a brand new operating system for mobile as well as changes elsewhere. Here is my social media round up for April 2013.

LinkedIn Mentions and New Applications

At the beginning of this month, LinkedIn announced a new feature to the site which many users would have seen on Facebook and Twitter already – mentions. However, these mentions work differently to those on Facebook and Twitter – you are only able to mention a user or company in a status update or on a comment in a thread. After upgrading the Search feature to increase engagement last month, LinkedIn say that they introduced this feature to allow users to have conversations with their connects more easily, but the feature is limited to only your connections, or those users in a discussion thread.

LinkedIn Mentions

Will it become useful? Considering LinkedIn does not have a wall feature (like on Facebook), and the only communication between users is via InMail, it could be a new way to contact your connections. Once you mention a user or company, it appears in their Notifications. However, will it become unsolicited with mentions that you would rather not have? This is the fear – and it may be used to spam connections (especially for LIONs – LinkedIn Open Networkers), and create unsolicited messages. It will be interesting to see how LinkedIn deal with this new feature and the obvious mis-use which will come.

Heavy outlined 5 ways to use LinkedIn Mentions to boost your brand awareness, but Andy Headworth at Sirona Consulting asked whether it is LinkedIn we’re seeing or a ‘mash-up’ of the other networks? The LinkedIn Mentions function is slowly being rolled out to everyone, and does not work perfectly yet. It will be interesting to see how it is used and the reaction, and whether LinkedIn will remove it in the future.

Another new feature which LinkedIn is slowly launching is an app marketed as a new personal assistant for users – LinkedIn Contacts:

According to Wired, LinkedIn Contacts will mix with your phone contacts and email contacts, to help keen them in order. It will give notifications of job changes and birthdays, but is only available in the US at present, and via waiting list. Linked Into Business have even said that it’s the best thing to happen to LinkedIn since LinkedIn! However, if you want to be first to find out when it is available in your location, you can join the waiting list via this link. This is something I’ve been wanting for a long time – do you know any good contact applications for smart phones? Let us know in the comments below!

New Facebook iOS App Updates & Facebook Home

After major changes to the desktop version of Facebook last month, this month saw the introduction of two major updates to Facebook’s mobile platform. At the beginning of the month, Facebook officially announced Home. Facebook Home is a new operating system, currently only available on Android. The features seem to be brilliant (I have an iPhone so can’t test it) and Techradar summarised everything you need to know about it in this short two minute clip:

Since its launch, the app has been download over half a million times – a good stat. However, according to the Google Play store, almost 15,000 people have reviewed it, and the average rating is only two stars. Oops! Is this a mistake that Facebook have made and people just don’t want Facebook messing up their Home? Convince and Convert were even asking whether Facebook Home was the beginning or the end? Personally I think it needs some time to grow. As with all the major Facebook changes, there will be some people who massively dislike it, but if Facebook nurture it in the same way as with all their other applications, I feel it can really work.

Facebook MobileAlthough it is only available on Android currently, Facebook have placed some of the features into their iOS update – including floating chat heads and stickers (as well as new feed features). These features are fun and make the experience a lot more interactive – it’s also easier to see when messages arrive as a little notification is added to the ‘chat head’.

There has also been a layout update for Facebook pages on mobile – something which I believe has been needed for a long time! What could come next for Facebook on desktop or mobile? Who knows! We’ll have to wait and see.

Other Momentos:

Those are my main moments from this month, but there was changes elsewhere:

  • Twitter #music – After turning 7 last monthTwitter launched #music this month – a new way for people to find music, through Twitter. I’ve tried it a few times and it is quite confusing, however it seems to be something which could grow into a much bigger and better monster.
  • Foursquare – After 4 years and over 3.5 billion check-ins, FourSquare have updated their app and website, giving both a much needed revamp. Are you a Foursquare fan? Have check-ins had their day? Let us know in the comments below.

What were your moments from this month? Let us know on our Facebook page or via Twitter (@UndercoverRec).