Facebook is a Key Factor in Helping Stay-at-Home Moms Make Money

LuLaRoe is a clothing company that is giving the ability to stay-at-home moms to make money through online sales. The company, founded in 2012, sells comfortable, practical and affordable clothes mainly for women, but children and men too. LuLaRoe is similar to companies like Mary Kay or 31 Gifts where people can become consultants and sell product. The company is not cheap to start up a shop, with starter consultant packages priced around $6,000. 


When someone becomes a consultant, they typically start up a Facebook page almost immediately. Many women are effectively utilizing Facebook to sell their product and connect with people throughout the country. Through the Facebook pages people host LuLaRoe parties, live streams and other events where the inventory is sold. A vast majority of the products are sold online through these Facebook groups. 


LuLaRoe groups have become vastly popular over the past few years, and the groups are becoming increasingly popular. Some Facebook groups have upwards of 50,000 members from all over the country while others have only a few hundred. Inside the Facebook groups are where photos of inventory are posted for potential buyers to browse through. 


People have had different perspectives about if LuLaRoe is actually helping people gain income or just putting them into a financial hole. With the large startup fee, LuLaRoe claims that consultants make an average of anywhere from a $2,250-$3,000 profit off their startup boxes. LuLaRoe also offers perks to its consultants including opportunities for bonuses and they match gifts that their consultants make. 


Learn more about becoming a LuLaRoe consultant on the LuLaRoe website

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Snapchat’s New Context Cards

Snapchat has introduced a new feature called ‘Context Cards’ that will dramatically change the Snapchat experience. According to a Tech Crunch article on Oct. 10, 2017, users will be able to swipe up from company’s venue-specific Geofilters to find information about things like restaurant reviews, reservations, Uber and Lyft ride hailing, contact information and more.

Context Card

Snapchat has partnered with TripAdvisor, Foursquare, Michelin, Goop, OpenTable, Uber, Lyft and more to provide its users with an immersive experience. Snapchat users will have no reason to leave the app in order to look up a place. They can get all the information they need in one spot. Context Cards will provide the most important and basic information first, then provide more detailed descriptions about things like user reviews, directions, and ride-hailing operations.

This new feature is extremely important to Snapchat’s growth. It shows that Snapchat is taking things to the next level. The app is about more than just sharing pictures, it can now be used to connect with people all over the world. I expect Context Cards to be very successful. I can see myself using them if I see a place on a friend’s story and I want to learn more about it. Snapchat has proved over and over that it is an ever changing social media app that is constantly adding new features.

Made By Google

Google announced new products today at a press conference in San Francisco.  New phones, computers, cameras, and VR headsets are some of the hot items Google will be releasing.

Here are the products that were announced.

Google Home Mini and Google Home Max

home-miniscreen-shot-2017-10-04-at-9-46-02-am

The tiny, and jumbo version of the Google Home speaker.  The mini is about the size of a donut, and will can easily blend in with its surroundings.  It does everything the same as the average size speaker.  Just smaller!  The Max is much bigger then the original Google Home.  It can stand vertical or horizontal!  Price for the mini is $49.  Price for the max is starting at $399.

Google Pixelbook

pixelbook1

Google’s latest laptop/tablet.  You can use it as a traditional laptop, or fold it into a tablet.  Also you can flip it over, and use it as a kickstand or base.   It has a thin sleek look, and the price will start of at $999.  For an extra $99 you can add the Pixelbook pen.  Who even uses styluses anymore?

Pixel 2

screen-shot-2017-10-04-at-10-26-32-am

Who ready for the new Google phone?  Here it is, the Pixel 2.  It comes in two sizes, is water resistant, has a fingerprint sensor, is the first phone to have Google Lens, but there is still no headphone jack!  Google had a hard time selling the original pixel phone, and will be interesting to see if Pixel 2 can make a turn around.

Daydream VR headset

daydream

A follow up to the 2016 Daydream headset, this new set will have a wider view, and a few new colors.

Google Pixel Buds

pixel-buds

For your phone with no headphone jack, you can buy these bad boys for $159.  Cool idea, but way to expensive for my taste.  Just give us our headphone jack back!

Google Clips

clips

Google Clips is a tiny camera that clips on to almost anything.  Your clothes, a bike, a table, anything!  It takes pictures automatically.  This small little gadget will cost you $249.  Is this little camera really worth it for that kind of price?  I need to be more convinced.

Check out this video Google posted of all the highlights of the event today.

https://techcrunch.com/gallery/heres-everything-google-announced-today/

People Aren’t Buying iPhone 8 and iPhone 8+

That claim- the one that is the title of this post—is pretty bold. Obviously, some people are buying the new iPhone brothers. But it seems like not as many have. Because Apple only releases sales dollars quarterly, we don’t actually have anything to look at, but we can speculate given on what we know about Apple’s past. So, here are the facts;

  • Every iPhone launch since iPhone 3GS has broken sales records for the company
  • Since Apple began selling new iPhone models online at the moment of their release, every single model of a new iPhone release would be sold out within hours
  • This is not true of iPhone 8 and iPhone 8+

How do we know this? Well, for starters, you can go onto the Apple Store online and go to the purchasing page. The Space Grey iPhone 8+ at 64GB, the most popular model of last year’s iPhone 7 and 7+ release, is still available. You could order it today—less than 2 weeks after the launch! —and receive it in the next 2 days. That’s unheard of at this point in iPhone history. But that’s true of almost every model. This is almost definitely because of iPhone X looming, only a few months away. Dedicated Apple fans in need of an upgrade would rather wait for the best iPhone device than settle for iPhone 8, which will be outdated in just a few months.

So, we now know (with what I’ll call “reasonable certainty,” if you believe me (check my sources)) that iPhone 8 and iPhone 8+ (henceforth, the two phones will be collectively referred to as ‘iPhone 8’) is selling measurably less than its forebears. But why? Let’s take a look at Apple’s other sub-premium iPhone releases to see if we can gather some information.

In 2013, Apple released the colorful plastic iPhone 5C along with iPhone 5S. This phone was largely considered a failure, but it actually sold about 24 million units. That’s a heck of a lot of phones, but is much lower than the approximately 91 million iPhone 5 units in the year before. Many considered this to be a massive failure for the company, but iPhone 5C outsold every phone other than iPhone 5S in the quarter of its release. The reason, then, that people considered the pastel brother of iPhone 5S a failure was because they were expecting iPhone 5C to sell as a premium model when, in fact, it was replacing the year-old iPhone 5 at the time. As a product that was designed as a previous generation product, it did much better than simply leaving the lineup alone would have. It made production cheaper by using plastic over aluminum, but kept the same year-old internals, which made the whole device quite the profitable boon, even if it didn’t sell as highly as the highest-end iPhone.

In 2016, Apple released iPhone SE, a phone with iPhone 6S power in the body of iPhone 5S. This was also released as a non-flagship iPhone, but it had a purpose: it was a small phone with all the power of a big phone. And it worked—iPhone SE sold between 13 and 17 million units. A new phone in Apple’s off-season proved to be a pretty big hit for the people who still wanted a smaller phone without needing to buy an older phone.

So, Apple has been successful in launching iPhone devices that were not designed to be the highest-end devices with fair success. So why is iPhone 8 doing so poorly? The answer seems to be that both iPhone 5C and iPhone SE were built for a specific purpose, to satisfy a certain type of buyer; the budget buyer and the small-phone user, respectively. iPhone 8 is different; it is the continuation of the “flagship iPhone” line, but it was outdated from the moment it was announced. Even though iPhone X is pricier, it isn’t that much more expensive; a 256GB iPhone 8+ is only $50 cheaper than a 64GB iPhone X, and most Apple fans are willing to bite the bullet to get the best iPhone. Whether iPhone X lives up to the hype is still to be seen, but we can already see just how much of the iPhone community is biding their time for the shiny new device.

 

Read more about all of these subjects:

Apple: iPhone 8 purchasing page

The Verge: iPhone X may be hurting iPhone 8 sales

AppleInsider: Apple’s iPhone 5c ‘failure flop’ outsold Blackberry, Windows Phone and every Android flagship in Q4

TechCrunch: The iPhone SE is selling just as Apple planned in the U.S. and Europe

This is the iPhone X

Today, ten years after Steve Jobs announced the release of the first iPhone, Apple introduced the new iPhone X.  On September 12, 2017, TechCrunch reported that the phone has a brand new design, with a glass front and back, allowing the phone to be water and dust resistant.  The iPhone X has an edge to edge screen, providing for a much newer look than the previous iPhones.

Perhaps the most prominent change to this phone is the loss of the home button.  iPhone users will simply need to swipe across their screen to wake up the phone or close an app.  The most advanced feature that this new phone is offering is FaceID.  The iPhone X will know what its user’s face looks like from all angles and people will be able to unlock their phone simply by putting it in front of their face.  Apple is claiming that this new feature could not be more secure, as they likely suspected that iPhone users would be rather skeptical of something so advanced.

The new phone also has an improved camera that allows for Portrait mode to be used on the front facing camera.  The phone comes with wireless charging capabilities and longer battery life, something that should appeal to the many people who lead non-stop, busy lives.

The iPhone X is starting at $999.  Will consumers be willing to spend this much on a phone that is so drastically different than what they are used to?  It will be interesting to see how popular the new phone and Apple’s new FaceID will become.  FaceID seems a bit like something one would see in a futuristic movie, but thanks to Apple, that future is becoming our reality.

Facebook combats a new form of ‘Fake News’

 

The Facebook logo is displayed on their website in an illustration photo taken in Bordeaux

I’m sure by now everyone is sick of hearing about ‘Fake News’ but it is important to be aware of government manipulation to change public opinion. It is reported that there have been efforts by entire nations such as France, and organizations to “spread misleading information and falsehoods for geopolitical goals.”

What makes this different than Fake News is that government officials or paid professionals are using fake profiles to either gather information about users and using it against them or increasing tensions between supporters.

This new phenomenon is called, “false amplification”. False amplification provides these “fake accounts” to use “techniques they have discovered to include coordinated “likes” to boost the prominence of key postings, the creation of groups that camouflage propaganda by including legitimate items, and the spread of inflammatory and racist material.” Facebook had to suspend 30,000 accounts in France last week during their first round of presidential elections.

My advice would be to only friend people on Facebook that you actually know exist. Facebook can tell the fake accounts from the real ones by inauthenticity and other behavioral patterns. Mark Zuckerberg has been on the record saying that he doesn’t believe that fake stories on Facebook could have influences the US presidential election this past year. He could have been paid to say that. I don’t know what to believe anymore.

For more information please read:

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-facebook-propaganda-response-idUSKBN17T2G6

Google Brings “Hamilton” to the Classroom

 

Hamilton
Orpheum Theatre

Starting at 300 dollars and reaching the thousands, Lin-Manuel Miranda’s ‘Hamilton’ is a pricey ticket. Google’s more public-spirited company Google.org gave 5,000 high school students across the country a great opportunity to see Hamilton: An American Musical. This is all thanks to an $800,000 grant from Google in collaboration with Gilder- Lehrman Institute.

Of course Google wants to help children but the real reason why they are doing this is to make some money. “Google is hoping that its virtual reality Expeditions program can cause students to more easily identify with historical events by taking on different viewpoints.”

What I gather from this article is that Google paid for some student to go on a trip to see Hamilton and see how they learn before they launch their new virtual reality platform for learning. It seems like it will be great for bringing great experiences like seeing ‘Hamilton’ to the classroom. Bringing a virtual museum or special event to a school without having to take them on a field trip could be very beneficial and cost effective if that’s what Google and schools plan on doing.

Please read more at:

Google brings ‘Hamilton’ experiences to students in the theater and virtual reality