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Facebook TV: Video ads now interrupting your News Feed

Facebook will gradually introduce 15-second video ads that auto play in News Feed to its 1.23 billion members following a three-month test of the product, the company said Thursday.

The new ads, called "Premium Video Ads," are modeled after television spots and are meant to give advertisers with deep pockets -- ads reportedly cost anywhere from $1 million to $2.5 million per day -- access to the broadest swath of Facebook users at specific intervals during the day.

Video ads play without sound when they appear on the screen. Members can scroll past an ad, or … Read more

Facebook Messenger for Windows Phone is the best way to chat on the go

Facebook Messenger for Windows Phone is a standalone app that lets you chat with your Facebook friends, send them photos and stickers, and that's it. It takes all the best parts of chatting over Facebook on the Web and puts them on your Windows Phone in a streamlined app.

The app is unique because it's the first Windows Phone app published by Facebook. Microsoft built the Facebook app for Windows Phone, though the company said it had help from the social network. While the main app looks nearly identical to Facebook for iOS and Android, Messenger uses the … Read more

Facebook's Hot Mom enjoys more cold stares

Innocence can be a practiced art.

Wide eyes, raised eyebrows, arms spread apart, palms upward. They're all quite effective.

Some, though, are suspicious that a fit and fetching Facebook mother is less innocent that she might appear.

No, I am not talking of Sheryl Sandberg. I am talking about another Lean-In Tower of Facebook: Maria Kang.

Should you not have heard of Kang, she's colloquially known as Facebook's "Hot Mom." This complex epithet was given her because she is, in the estimation of many, hot and she is a mom of three.

One problem some people have is that Kang seems to think she's quite hot too.… Read more

On Facebook, good (and bad) moods are infectious

Isn't it interesting when someone posts a highly positive comment on Facebook and tons of their friends "like" the post and chime in with like-minded comments? Likewise, the same happens with negative comments. This is no coincidence.

A new study published in Plos One on Wednesday by researchers from the University of California at San Diego says that moods on Facebook are contagious. While negative posts definitely beget negative posts, positive posts are apparently more infectious.

"Our study suggests that people are not just choosing other people like themselves to associate with but actually causing their … Read more

The 404 1,442: Where we're all mixed up (podcast)

Leaked from today's 404 episode:

- Popcorn Time is just like Netflix, but everything is pirated.

- Polygon examines everything that went wrong with the "Street Fighter" movie.

- People are selling their organs on Facebook.

- In which Jeff attempts to explain cloud-gaming in Titanfall to Justin.… Read more

Instagram tailors Android app to devices of all sizes

Facebook-owned Instagram has released a new version of its Android application that speeds things up a bit and better suits the particular needs of those toting around a device running Google's operating system.

Instagram for Android, version 5.1, was released Tuesday on Google Play.

The revamped application is said to be easier to use and overall more responsive in nature. The app's look has also been modified to accommodate devices of varying sizes, with simplified visuals for smaller phones, and more-reachable buttons for bigger devices.

"It's the same Instagram for Android you know and love … Read more

Instagram adds pizzazz to Lux on iPhone

Avid Instagram users know that Lux works like magic -- except when it doesn't.

The Facebook-owned photo and video app is hoping to solve for those overly oversaturated scenarios with an iOS-only revamp to its auto-enhance feature, known as "Lux," that gives people the power to adjust the auto-effects to their liking.

The adjustable version of Lux, denoted by the brightness icon in the app, was delivered Monday in an update to the iOS app.

The change amounts to a slider that people can use to strengthen or soften their shots. Though a minor improvement, the new … Read more

Facebook cleans up desktop Page design

Facebook said Monday that it is putting a new face on the desktop version of its Pages, which are the equivalent of profiles for public entities such as brands, businesses, and celebrities.

The new look for Pages, rolling out this week, is modeled after the simplified Timeline design for member profiles released last year. It organizes Page information and posts into their own columns for a more clutter-free experience. The left-hand column displays business information such as location, hours, and photos, while the right-hand column serves as a feed of Page posts.

The tweaked desktop design is meant to make … Read more

Facebook to revive f8 after three-year hiatus

Update, Wednesday, March 12 at 9:30 a.m. PT: Facebook opened registration for f8. The company will be distributing conference tickets, each costing $495, using an application system.

Facebook announced Saturday that it's bringing back its once-annual f8 developer conference. After taking a three-year break, the company will hold its next f8 event on April 30 at the San Francisco Design Concourse.

The one-day conference will be even more developer-focused than in years past, meaning it will be highly technical in nature and not likely to include any bombshell consumer-product reveals. Attendees can expect the company to pay … Read more

Why Facebook went for basic over bold with News Feed (Q&A)

After a year of waiting, you're finally getting a new News Feed -- except that it's not at all like the one you were originally promised.

Thursday, Facebook started rolling out an "updated" look to the desktop version of News Feed. The changes, announced with little fanfare in a blog post, amount to larger pictures and new fonts, and they represent a distinct about-face from the bigger, bolder News Feed that the social network unveiled with pomp and circumstance last year. That version, however, turned out to be too complex for the average person and was … Read more