The warm summer sun may entice you to take a break, but tech news keeps coming fast and furious! Here’s a rundown of the latest news to help you keep up with important and exciting changes coming to the tech you use. New features mean that these updated tech tools are more powerful, making them more useful for you.
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Updates to each of these services give you added features and benefits that you’ll want to learn about to see which ones you may want to use.
Amazon Prime Music
Great news for Amazon Prime members! You just got a brand new benefit from your membership: Amazon Prime Music. This ad-free music streaming service is now available to Amazon Prime Members.
Amazon Prime Music has over 1 million songs and hundreds of playlists which you can listen to without ads. The service features unlimited listening, even when you’re offline and have no Internet access. You can listen as long as you want and skip as many songs as you want. You can even repeat songs in case you find a new favorite tune you can’t get enough of!
This video shows Amazon Prime Music in action:
The Amazon Prime Music Help page gives more information about the service.
You can get Amazon Prime Music via an app on your mobile device:
- iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch from the iTunes App Store
- Android devices from Google Play
- Kindle Fire and Android devices from the Amazon Appstore
- Windows Phone at the Windows store
You can also listen on your computer by downloading free Amazon Prime Music software.
Amazon Mayday Button
Last fall Amazon introduced the Mayday button to the Amazon Fire HDX tablet which connects users to a live operator, available via webcam 24/7 to help people with their queries. According to Amazon, the average response time for a Mayday operator is 9.75 seconds and 75% of customer service questions come to Amazon via the Mayday button.
Since its launch, the Mayday button has proven to be a very popular Customer Service feature and has been used for some unusual purposes. Amazon shared some of the more unique uses for Mayday:
- After being stuck on a specific Angry Birds level for a week, a Tech Advisor helped a customer beat the level.
- What better way to settle a score than to use the Mayday button? A group of friends asked how to make a perfect peanut butter and jelly sandwich to prove whose approach was best.
- A Tech Advisor sang happy birthday to someone as they were receiving a Fire HDX from their boyfriend.
- Contacts are coming in from customers traveling around the world–Australia, Bolivia, Egypt, Kenya, St. Lucia and Venezuela, to name a few.
- Customers have asked Tech Advisors to draw everything from happy faces to rainbows, unicorns, fire-breathing dragons, and aliens.
- Mayday Tech Advisors also get their fair share of date requests and marriage proposals, but beyond that, they’ve been called everything from helpful, patient, sweet, wonderful, and courteous to beautiful, polite, and the “BEST EVER.”
➩ See my full review: Kindle Fire HDX with the Mayday Button – A Radically Different Tablet.
If you’ve been spoiled by using Pinterest Guided Search on your mobile device, you’ll be thrilled to learn that this helpful feature is soon coming to the web. You’ll be able to type your search term into the box and see category suggestions from Pinterest to help guide you on a path of discovering new pins.
You can use these suggestions to filter your search to find exactly what you were searching for or get ideas that lead you in an unexpected direction.
This video shows you how Guided Search works on Pinterest:
As the number of pins grow Pinterest becomes an increasingly useful database. By using Guided Search you’ll have a new key to unlock the treasures of Pinterest.
➩ Be sure to check out Pinterest Guided Search – A New Path to Pinspiration! for my full review of Pinterest Guided Search.
Pinterest Guided Search for the Web will be rolled out over the next few weeks. You can find out more information from the Pinterest Guided Search blog.
Facebook Paper App
Facebook updated its Paper app with additional features to make it easier and more powerful. Now with Paper you can:
- Update your profile picture and cover photo. Just select the photo you want to use, crop and resize it and add it directly from the app.
- View photo tags to see who’s in pictures.
- Use mentions in status updates and comments to let friends know you’ve mentioned them.
- Edit the audience of a post to control your sharing.
- Use #hashtags to help your posts be found and search for topics.
- Copy and paste text from posts to make sharing easier.
- See trending topics in real time to see what other people are talking about on Paper.
➩ For my full review of Facebook’s Paper App see, Paper – Facebook’s 10 Year Birthday Present for You!
Facebook Slingshot App
Yesterday Facebook officially launched a new app called Slingshot, created by the developers of its Paper app. Slingshot lets you instantly share photos and videos with your friends via the app. Sounds like Facebook, right?
The catch is that in order to see the photos/videos, your friends have to share back with you.
To use Slingshot, download the app, then take a video or photo (you can’t use existing ones from your Camera Roll). You can add text and color, then sling it to your Facebook friends.
They can’t see what you sent until they send a photo or video back to you. When you’re done looking at the photo or video, just swipe it and it’s gone for good from your phone or tablet.
You can sync your Contacts and Facebook friends to find people who are using Slingshot. You can also invite friends via text message. If you have a friend who doesn’t share much on Facebook, this might be the key to getting them to engage!
This video shows you Slingshot in action:
Slingshot is available for free for:
You can find out more information about the app from the Introducing Slingshot page.
Have you ever needed to send someone private information, such as a passport number, credit card information or user ID and password? Sharing this information using email or text message can leave you vulnerable to hackers.
Mustbin, the app that provides military-grade security for your important information has recently updated its app so you can share your information with others securely. Two new features, Secure Messages and Bin Sharing, were added to the app so that you can keep your information safe when you share it with others.
Secure Messages enables Mustbin users to send encrypted messages to each other directly within the app. According to Mustbin, this feature offers end-to-end encryption, so that no third party (even Mustbin employees) can see users’ messages. Mustbin says that Secure Messages is “the most secure, permanent messaging service available.” Messages sent using Mustbin are stored in the cloud so you’ll have access to them until you delete them.
Bin Sharing allows users to easily share bin contents with their trusted contacts. You can use this feature to share entire bins with other Mustbin users. Bin members can comment on and like specific content, which would be especially useful for photo sharing.
➩ Don’t miss: Mustbin — Securely Store and Share Your Information for my full review of the Mustbin app.
Get the free Mustbin app for iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch at the iTunes App Store.
Which updates are the most exciting for you? Which ones do you think you will use the most? Had you heard about all of these updates? Can you keep up with all the tech news that just keeps coming? Let us know in the Comments section below!