Via.Me: The Social Media App that Does it All

Via.me, a new social publishing platform from developers RadiumOne, launched on March 1st. The app enables you to publish content to different social media accounts, without having to log in to separate websites or apps to do so. The first of its kind on the app market, Via.me shares text, video, images and voice notes with a single tap. In a world where very few people have just one social media account, and businesses are utilizing social networks for publicity and promotional purposes, Via.me is a useful tool for professionals and consumers alike.

via

Instead of adding another social network an already crowded market, Via.me provides an easy way to publish to several different networks at once. As well as being compatible with the big name networks Facebook and Twitter, Via.me also rivals the mega-popular photo app, Instagram, with 17 built-in photo filters that enable users to edit and stylise their photos before sharing them.

Designed for both consumers and businesses, Via.me helps people send information to their networks faster and with more convenience. Users can view comments others leave on their posts through the app, and it also provides detailed analysis and statistics for brands and businesses on their social media presence and reach.

Users can create an account at www.via.me and publish to any of their social networking profiles from a computer, in addition to using the app. Both the app and desktop versions are simple to use, with a sleek, intuitive interface, and allow users to choose which websites they want to publish to with each individual post.

We created a great product that not only is fun to use for consumers, but becomes a game changer for brands and publishers,” said Gurbaksh Chahal, CEO of RadiumOne. “Via.me is the easy, simple solution that enables publishing multiple types of content from one place across all your social profiles.

Via.me is currently only available as for iPhone and as a desktop app, however RadiumOne are looking to release the app to other platforms in the near future. The app is free and available from the iTunes store. To fine out more, visit www.via.me, or watch a short video that demonstrates the app here.

Tweetfields – Home of the ‘hottest’ festival news and yet more proof of the middle class colonisation of music festivals

Combine the words Tweetminster and Creamfields and what do you get? A rather boring and predictable anagram of the two enterprises – ‘Tweetfields’. This is, nonetheless, the name Tweetminster and Vodafone VIP have come up with in their creation of the first ever Twitter aggregator for music festivals, www.tweetfields.com.

Tweetfields

With more than 450 in the UK alone, music festivals have come a long way since the first ever Glastonbury took place in 1970 when you got a pint of milk with your ticket. Given the rising prominence and popularity of music festivals, it was only a matter of time before a site dedicated to ‘delivering the definitive information feed to music fans across the festival season and beyond’ occupied the wires and satellite links of the World Wide Web.

Tweetfields essentially works by identifying some of the most influential figures in the festival ‘Twittersphere’ and pooling and monitoring the content shared by these resources on one site. This information, analysis, news and developing trends are live and updated in real time – a bit like a live weather forecast site but infinitely less important.

So where does Vodafone fit in? Well the communication giants such as Orange and Vodafone have been increasingly involved music sponsorship events, such as Orange Glastonbury, Vodafone VIP and O2 Academy. Evolving this trend Tweetminster is working with Vodafone to power Tweetfields, consolidating Vodafone VIP’s position as a festival innovator and building on the company’s sponsorship of 11 festivals in the UK throughout the year.

So what will Tweetfields bring to the thousands of festival fans out there? Well as well as being informed about new trends and performances, visitors to Tweetfields will be offered the hottest tickets and ‘money can’t buy experience’ service through 48-hour advance access to festival tickets and on-site benefits, including a Vodafone recharge truck and Vodaafone VIP viewing platform – Who said that music festivals had returned to their ‘hippy’ roots after being colonised by the middle classes?

Competwition: Twitter FTW

If you like free stuff, Competwition should be bookmarked in your browser. If you’re a small business looking to run prize draws on Twitter, Competwition may be the only app you’ll ever need.

Competwition

From the makers of Twitition – the internet’s fastest-growing Twitter-petition site – the service allows business to easily run Twitter-centric giveaway campaigns. For users, this means that the Competwition website is a one-stop shop for free stuff – it’s all just one tweet away.

Businesses can create a Competwition on Twitter for free in minutes through a simple process on the website. For tweeters, simply find an offer you like, click “enter” and you’re done.

Competwition will then automatically follow the brand that created the offer and tweet about the deal to your followers. For brands, it’s a great way to quickly spread throughout the Twitter community. For users, Competwition gives them the chance to win free prizes easily.

Branded3’s Director of Search, Patrick Altoft, said: “It allows businesses, or marketing agencies working for brands, to quickly build Twitter followers, strengthen their social media profile, enhance their relationship with existing customers and engages with audiences they may not have otherwise been able to reach.” Which is great, Patrick, but you’re missing the key point: it gives us free stuff.

It’s taking off quite quickly, with around ten deals already listed on the service. Our favourites (at the time of writing) were offers to win an:

16GB white iPhone 4
£200 vouchers to use with Spa Breaks
Morphy Richards Performair vacuum
Three iPad 2s

And remember, the earlier you adopt, the better your chance of winning!

TwitReview: It’s rude to eat and tweet at the same time. Or is it?

Seeing a man chow down on his cheese and herb pizza and take out his BlackBerry to use Twitter might be about to become normality after details of a new unique restaurant review website emerged.

Twitreview
Picture courtesy of Flickr user rainydayknitter

TwitReview, which begins with a private beta launch in March before a full public unveiling later, spins on the idea that up-to-date restaurant reviews are indeed the best reviews. Out of date reviews are the scourge of any keen restaurant goer and they may, of course, lead to someone innocently picking the curry when they really, really shouldn’t have.

The service requires users to tweet reviews with an OWLi – a code unique to a particular participating restaurant or café – and a TwitReview hashtag. After the review has been filed, users can search on the website for recent reviews of the eatery – or, if you’re the head chef, check up on what people really think of your mussels.

One of TwitReview’s more redeeming features is its multimedia possibilities. Similar to how the every day man can indulge in a bit of citizen journalism via amateur photos and videos, Joe Bloggs will now be able to partake in citizen restaurant reviewing – meaning pictures and videos can accompany the text. And with strong multimedia functionality, the mind wanders with regards to other avenues TwitReview could explore. Retail reviews, or live music reviews, could be possibilities.

Its obvious drawback however – and one shared with most Twitter activities in general – is the 140 character limit. How are you supposed to wax lyrical about that sirloin steak in such a tight word limit? It’s a conundrum we’ll only really be able to work out when the service fully launches to the public later this year, but the signs are looking good for TwitReview. Bon Appetite, they say.

For more information, visit www.twitreview.co.uk

MySpace and Facebook team-up: Flogging a dead horse?

It might be akin to flogging a dead horse, but the more eagle-eyed social networking fans out there may have noticed that MySpace has had a bit of a facelift in an effort to reassert its position as a web heavyweight.

MySpace is a veteran of the social networking scene but the emergence of Facebook and Twitter has seen its popularity wane to a point where some of it’s most devoted users – especially bands and musicians – have begun to jump ship.

MySpace-Facebook

A lot of MySpace’s roots lie in music and entertainment, but with the likes of Bandcamp and Soundcloud offering simple, clean homes for streaming music, MySpace have been left wondering where to go next to reclaim all its lost souls.

And where does the revamp point to? Well, a lot of music it seems. In comes a new ‘Discover’ section, littered a smorgasbord of links to bands, music videos and other promotional gubbins. It’s all pretty clickable, and compared to its once clumsy looking interface, it looks sleek with a mature black and grey colour scheme.

Allied with the ‘Discover’ section is the ‘My Stuff’ tab, treading upon the finer details of social networking – giving you a chance to customise your profile, upload photos, search for new friends and indulge in all the usual networking.

Delve into this new-look portal deeper and its flashy make-up begins to dissipate, leaving you with the bare bones of a floundering social networking website.

On the other side of the spectrum however, Facebook has recently announced a new, all-inclusive messaging system which incorporates chat and texts alongside your traditional messages – a logical addition in the website’s quest to truly dominate the market.

Twitter, of course, has phased in a new layout, providing greater integration, navigation and smoother interaction.

With Facebook and Twitter covering most social networking bases, plucky entrepreneurial pizzazz is needed to break into the market. Perhaps most notably, foursquare has gained popularity in 2010 and its interactivity – like a distant cousin of social networking websites – sees users check in at various locations as they move around cities, doubling up as a travel guide and also a game.

MySpace’s deviation into what seems more like a social media hub rather than a social networking website is an interesting one, but with the likes of streaming program Spotify becoming hugely popular, it’s left to ponder whether MySpace has any sort of real future.

T-Mobile Vibe Mobile – Simple, cheap and social media friendly

Following the success of the T-Mobile Vairy Touch series, ZTE have announced the launch of the T-Mobile Vibe. Part of the Vairy Touch series popularity was because they provided a pay-as-you-go mobile with mobile broadband and email at an extremely reasonable price. Being available for just £39.99, the T-Mobile Vibe is obviously continuing ZTE’s promise to provide inexpensive handsets. But will the Vibe exceed its predecessor in its compactness, quality and collection of features we have now come to expect from our mobile?

T-Mobile-Vibe

Effortless texting and rapid social networking have now become one of the most sought-after traits of modern technology and the T-Mobile Vibe certainly excels itself in these highly demanding arenas. A QWERTY keyboard naturally, provides for easy text messages, whilst a one touch icon on a 2.8 touchscreen that goes directly to a Facebook user’s login page, needless to say makes connecting to Facebook almost instant. The other popular social media sites, such as MySpace, Bebo and Twitter are available via bookmarks, lessening a social media fanatic’s angst at not being able to gain access to their favourite social media site within seconds.

Music also plays a leading role in what consumers anticipate from modern mobiles and the T-Mobile Vibe certainly doesn’t fail to live up to any contemporary audio expectations. Similar to the Vairy Touch II, users can listen to radio stations on an FM radio, as well as playing their favourite music on an MP3 player, which will also play Midi, iMelody, WAV, AMR, AWB, M4A, MP4 and 3GP files. Music libraries and photo collections can also be shared via Bluetooth connectivity.

Following in the footsteps of the Vairy Touch II, the new T-Mobile Vibe also possesses a 2MP camera, with integrated video and a 2GB memory for storing pictures and videos.

Of course the ‘lesser’ and more ‘antiquated’ features such as converting currencies, a calendar, calculator, stop watch and world clock, are also integrated into the T-Mobile Vibe, but these days, are rarely worthy of a mention.

Being available in black and pink, this stylish, simple, social media-friendly and feature-packed mobile, we suspect, at under 40 quid, will appeal to wide audience and could prove to be a popular stocking filler seller this Christmas.

TWIG: Twitter towel, Boiling Frog survivalist apps, One For All PS3 remote

The Week in Gadgets

Looking for an ethical gift for your hip social media loving friends? The people behind History Pin and I am NOT a Plastic Bag have brought out a Twitter towel – so you can send a Tweet to a loved one (or anyone really) for £10, even if they are off line. We Are What We Do – an organisation that aims to get people doing small things that lead to big changes – channels all money raised into it’s charitable activities. Of course, it helps if you have some memorable Tweets.
Like this.

Tweet-Towel

Travelling yet lacking essential survivalist skills? This is not probably high on your agenda if you taking a day trip to Bournemouth, but if you are bound for the woods, or to exotic locales further abroad then you might need to know what to do when you are bitten by poisonous centipedes or how to start a fire with leaves. We can’t all be McGuyver but due to the world we now live in, there is of course “an app for that.” Boiling Frog, is a new travel app with health, travel and safety advice, created by a leading GP, an ex Royal Marine, an ex Special Forces officer and a specialist on first aid, health and medical training. It’s like having a round the clock team of Andy McNabs in your pocket, for just £3.99 on a range of smartphones.

PS3-One-For-All

One For All have carried on with their bid to create One Remote Control To Rule Them All, and are launching a PS3 bluetooth adaptor to bring the PS3 under the umbrella of things controlled by the SmartControl universal remote. Pairing is a simple affair via a key and gives you access to control of your games console. And with 3D Blu-ray support now baked into the PS3 via a recent firmware update, it’s become more useful than ever. The SmartControl remote together with the wireless PS3 adaptor are being specially bundled in time for Christmas priced £49.99 (RRP).

TWIG: Sony s750 WALKMAN and Theory Test iPhone app

The Week in Gadgets

As ever, it was a busy week in the gadget world with the quietly brilliant team at HTC unleashing a slew of new European handsets at a London launch. Meanwhile, over at Nokia World the Finnish giant outlined its vision of the mobile telecommunications based future, with a number of new low- mid- and high-end handsets. We’ll be looking at both the Nokia and HTC releases in detail over the next week.

Twitter gave itself a brisk birdbath and launched a shiny new version of its web interface, modelled very much on the recent proliferation of desktop and phone-based apps – in particular the excellent Twitter for iPad app. Whilst the old Twitter interface was a curiously downbeat and simple affair, the new Twitter has a swanky 2 column layout and has much better photo, link and video sharing options built in. They’ve also attempted to shift the focus of the site to consumption – it’s a fantastic resource for people into news, music, film or comedy to dip into for real time content and the new layout emphasises this, reducing some of the pressure for you to “join in” as it were.

Sony-s750-WALKMAN

Hot on the heels of Apple’s revamp of its iPod range, Sony have released the s750 WALKMAN. Ultra thin – 7.2 mm to be exact, the s750 manages to squeeze a Digital Noise Cancelling system into the aluminium body. They claim this can cancel up to 98% of background noise and coupled with other Clear Audio technologies, should provide a decent listening experience. DRM-free music and video can be transferred via drag-and-drop and there is also some DoubleTwist-esque software that converts your DIVX and AVCHD files into s750-compatible files. Handy if you miss the video playback stripped from the new iPod nanos. With 50 hours of music playback or 10 hours of video, a built in karaoke mode, a lyrics app and something that automatically generates mood-based playlists, the s750 should be worth checking out when it lands in October.

The-Theory-Test

If you’re learning to drive, you should probably take a gander at the new, feature-packed Theory Test iPhone app from the people behind LowPriceLessons.com. Using geolocation software, the app finds Approved Driving Instructors near you, shows you prices and reviews from other users and allows you to call them, direct from the app. As the name suggests, it also comes with Theory and Hazard Perception tests and even includes a multiplayer-social element where you can compete with friends. Not bad for £1.19 – especially when rival apps such as the £1.79 AA Theory Test application simply have theory tests and lack the instructor booking, multiplayer elements or Hazard Perception tests. Out now in the App store.