Happy Holidays! Your favorite apps all got major updates. In the last major development push before the New Years, Instagram, Foursquare, and Twitter all locked their developers away to make sure you had some nice takeaways before 2014.
We covered the big Instagram news yesterday – Instagram Direct. You can now send pictures and videos to between one and fifteen friends (one for every second!), along with a little text caption, instead of just sharing publicly. The updated Instagram app is good to go for both iOS and Android.
For iOS 7 users, there’s a new Foursquare update available. Foursquare will now push suggestions about places to see or things to eat in your area. Instead of having to open the app, Foursquare can now just push those suggestions straight to your lock screen or home screen, based on your current location. It’ll even fish out a recommendation from one of your friends about what to try if the app is offering you a suggestion for a nearby restaurant. Foursquare will also light your phone up with local deals, and there’s ample opportunity for Foursquare stalking by checking out your feed to see where all of your friends have checked in. That’s in addition to the smoother, sleeker UI that fits in a little better with the iOS 7 look.
Twitter’s actually treading on Instagram’s turf a little, offering their own option to send pictures or videos as direct messages. Access to those direct messages is now easier – you’ll find them as a tab on the bottom of the app, along with Timelines, Notifications, and your profile. You can also opt to just get notifications when someone you follow replies, retweets, or favorites something of yours. There’s now local search, so you can scan for tweets in your immediate vicinity. In general, the UI overhaul is much more friendly to pictures, videos, and articles, with large previews that liven up your Twitter feed a little. And, as this is an iOS update, here’s something just for Apple users – integration with Safari Reading List for articles you want to read later.