Instagram introduces ‘poll’ stickers and other creative tools in Stories

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Instagram has introduced a Poll Sticker in its Stories offering to further boost engagement on a feature that is already being used by 250 million users daily. Polls can be added to Stories just like any other sticker — by dragging and dropping it on the post. Once you pull the sticker, you can customize the two-option poll. It could be a simple Yes-No poll or any other options you wish to offer your followers. People viewing the Story can tap and vote, and view the poll results in real-time — similar to Twitter Polls.

Announcing the new feature on its blog, Instagram stated, “Whether you’re trying to plan tomorrow’s outfit, choosing which class to take or figuring out where to go for dinner, now it’s easy to share a two-option poll right in your story. After you’ve taken a photo or video for your story, select the “poll” sticker and place it anywhere you’d like — you can write out your own question and even customize the poll choices.”

Instagram Stories PollIf you wish to view the results of your poll, you can swipe up to open the viewers list for that part of your Story. It will throw up the number of votes received by each option as well as handles of those who voted in the poll. You can also check who voted for which option. “That way, you’ll be able to compare votes from the friends and followers whose opinions you trust most. And just like your story, your poll and its results will disappear after 24 hours,” Instagram added. ALSO READ: Instagram launches new tools and Kindness stickers for ‘Wellbeing’ of its users

Instagram-Stories-ToolsAlong with Polls, the photo-sharing platform has also introduced two new tools in the form of a a color picker for text, and brushes and an alignment tool for text and stickers. This will help users make their posts more “creative” reckons the Facebook-owned app. When you choose a color for your text or drawing tool, you’ll see a new eyedropper icon in the bottom left. You can select a color from your photo/video and apply it to the text.

The new tools are available on the updated Instagram app on Android and iOS. However, iOS gets an additional “alignment” that will allow users to ensure that their text and stickers are placed at the center of their picture-posts. It is not clear when Instagram will roll out this tool on Android. ALSO READ: Instagram Stories turns one: Here’s everything you need to know

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98% of Small Businesses Use Wireless, AT&T Poll Says

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Nearly all (98 percent) small businesses use wireless technologies in their operations, a 2013 AT&T small business technology poll says.

Details of the poll released recently also reveal how dependent upon wireless technology most small businesses have become.

For example, the survey shows two-thirds (about 66 percent) of those businesses would be unable to survive or would be severely challenged without wireless.

“For small businesses today, wireless solutions have become part of their DNA,” said Cathy Martine, AT&T executive vice president of small business solutions in a release earlier this year.

The poll also reveals additional details about the choice of wireless technology for many small firms.

Smartphones — Small businesses depend on their smartphones – and usages keeps growing. The poll found 85 percent of small businesses use some kind of smartphone in their operations (even if it isn’t the latest generation). That’s double the number five years ago.

Tablets — Just over two thirds (69 percent) of small businesses now say they use tablets in their operations. That’s a bit up from the 66 percent of small companies that said they used the devices last year.

Interestingly, the use of tablets increases with the size of the business. Ninety percent of firms with between 51 and 99 employees use tablets, while only seven in 10 (69 percent) of firms with 50 or fewer employees do so.

Newer businesses are also more likely to use  tablets.  The survey found 80 percent of small businesses less than two years old use tablets in their operations, while just 69 percent of those two years and older use them.

Mobile apps — Despite all the hundreds of thousands of apps available today, only 31 percent of small businesses in the survey say they use apps in business.  But of the ones who do, almost half say they couldn’t live without them.

The survey paints a picture of tech-savvy small businesses far removed from the old stereotype of small businesses as  technology laggards.  Small business owners are probably not surprised by the popularity of wireless technology in business operations. It brings productivity and allows small business personnel to be mobile instead of stuck in the office all day.

AT&T’s 2013 Small Business Technology Poll was conducted with 1,000 small businesses in 50 states and the District of Columbia surveyed from December 18 through December 27, 2012.

[“source-smallbiztrends”]

[POLL] How Much Mobile Data Did You Use Last Month?

The Results of this Poll Will Help People Answer the Question, How much mobile data do I need?

How attached are you to your phone?

If you’re using your phone for just about everything — maybe your business takes you on the road quite a bit — then you’re likely using a lot of mobile data.

If you’re tethered to your desk or your laptop in the confines of an office, not so much. There’s probably no need to  use your smartphone for anything but calls — and maybe not even that if you can contact colleagues via Skype.

Your Answers are Going to Help People Answer the Question: “How much mobile data do I need?”

So we’re curious. Which group do you belong to? Or are you somewhere in between? Are you using enough data for your carrier to name a plan after you or is your approach to data kind of old school — circa 2004?

Take a minute — check your last bill or your phone’s settings — and answer this week’s Small Business Trends poll question:

[“source-smallbiztrends”]

Global Majority Backs a Ban on ‘Dark Net,’ Poll Says

Global Majority Backs a Ban on 'Dark Net,' Poll Says

Seven in 10 people say the “dark net” – an anonymous online home to both criminals and activists fearful of government surveillance – should be shut down, according to a global Ipsos poll released on Tuesday.

The findings, from a poll of at least 1,000 people in each of 24 countries, come as policymakers and technology companies argue over whether digital privacy should be curbed to help regulators and law enforcement more easily thwart hackers and other digital threats.

The US Justice Department is currently trying to force Apple Inc to write software to allow access to an iPhone used by San Bernardino, California shooter Rizwan Farook.

The dark net refers to an area of the Internet only accessible via special web browsers that ensure anonymity, where content is hidden and data typically encrypted.

The Ipsos poll was commissioned the Waterloo, Ontario-based Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI). The think tank is part of a commission seeking to shape Internet governance.

The question asked in the poll pointed out the dark net’s anonymity can protect journalists, human rights activists, dissidents and whistleblowers, but also hide child abuse networks and illegal marketplaces selling weapons and narcotics.

The portion of respondents who either strongly agreed or somewhat agreed it should be shuttered ranged between 61 percent and 85 percent, with support strongest in Indonesia, India, Egypt and Mexico and weakest in Sweden, South Korea and Kenya.

Other countries polled included Pakistan, Australia, the United States, France, Germany, Turkey, and Tunisia.

“The public clearly wants law enforcement to have the tools to do its job. But if you flip it around and say should they have access to your data they tend to feel differently,” said Fen Osler Hampson, director of the global security and politics program at CIGI.

Only 38 percent of all respondents said they trust that their online activities are not monitored.

Hampson said public concern about online privacy will likely grow as more and more cars, appliances and infrastructure connect to online networks.

Ipsos said the poll was accurate in each country to within plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

© Thomson Reuters 2016

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Tags: Dark net, Internet
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