What is TikTok and why is everyone obsessed with it.

Like the many people sitting at home board out of their minds, I decided I was going to download the app TikTok to try and really get an understanding of what it is and how it took over the social media world by storm.

According to TikTok’s website, it described as being “the leading destination for short-form mobile videos” with their mission being “to inspire creativity and bring joy”.

TikTok reminds me of another app that was very popular when I was younger, that app, of course, being Vine. The only differences between the two apps are the length of content that could be uploaded and the ability to repost content.

In Vine the videos could only be 6 seconds, making them seem more abrupt but unique as a culture was shaped over the years of vines existence.

Tiktok videos could be as short as fifteen seconds or as long as a minute giving the user more time to put out their content in a more completed form. The second difference is that you cant repost people’s content on your personal TikTok page like in Vine, all content needs to be yours, I can appreciate this because I feel most apps do nothing when it comes to protecting your own personal content.  

Maryam Mohsin wrote an article that included ten interesting facts about the social media company. Since launching in 2016, the TikTok user base has grown to over “500 million active users worldwide” making it “9th when compared to usage from other apps”.

The ages range when it comes to users and this app, though “41 percent of TikTok users are aged between 16 and 24”, there has been a huge increase as “in less than 18 months, the number of US adults TikTok users grew 5.5 times”.

I’d credit that to the simplicity of the app and mainstream internet challenges that go viral eventually being featured on the news or platforms used by adults.  The app is very simple to use but easy to get lost in, the for you page is essentially where your content might end up if it goes viral.

The for you page reminds me of a slot machine at a casino, much like pulling a lever over and over your constantly swiping up going through content which is nice until two hours go by and you have no idea where the time went.  

(Just an example of what the For You page looks like, the four icons on the right from top to bottom are the content creators page with the plus being the follow button, the heart is the like button, the voice memo is the comment section and the arrow gives you the ability to share the content via text or Snapchat)
image from https://www.pocket-lint.com/apps/news/149869-best-tiktok-tips-and-tricks

There is such a wide variety of content for that for you page anyone could really get involved with the app, I saw hunting videos, dancing, lip singing, life hacks, comedy sketches the list goes on and on.

I really do like this app, I feel like any new app especially nowadays is a breath of fresh air due to apps like Instagram, Twitter and YouTube’s domination on social media.

I saw videos that pulled my heartstrings, made me laugh and even some that made me questioned myself as to why I got this app but truly if you’re a content creator TikTok is a perfect way to share and show how your content is made.

Embrace The Square: Why You Hate Instagram But Still Use It

 

There’s no denying since the release of camera-competitive smartphones, Instagram revolutionized the way we take and share pictures. It’s the only app that restricts its main posts in one specific dimension (600×600 pixels) and yet, even with this fact, 95 million photos are posted every day. I’ve wandered off Instagram at some point in my life and switched to other photography platforms like VSCO — which I still love, by the way — but found my way back to the now-Mark Zuckerberg-owned application. Instagram is like that one annoying friend you just can’t get rid of because #1, everybody likes her and #2, apparently, she is all the buzz even with her dull and copycat personality.
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Little known Google Apps

I have had an Android smartphone since 2011 and up until this past Saturday when my beloved LG G5 began malfunctioning. As a college student with not much extra cash to pay for my smartphone to get fixed, I was lent an older iPhone by a family member. I was missing some apps that were on my old smartphone. I wondered if the App store carried Google apps that I used beforehand and, to my surprise they did!

So, here is a brief list of some apps you should check out.  

The first one to be downloaded was Google photos. They have unlimited photo storage but there is one catch, all the photos are limited to a resolution of 16 megapixels. I only learned about this a couple of months ago, meaning I really need to go through and clean out some of the 5,000 photos I have on there.

Google Photos

Noticing the maps on the iPhone is terrible when it couldn’t find the address of a friend that had recently moved. I downloaded Google Maps and found the address right away. A neat feature that can be found is under the menu button. There is an option to click and view “your timeline”. Anytime you allowed your location to be on, Google kept track of your movements. Pick a date or time and you can see where you to travelled to on a day by day basis. Only you have access to this feature but, I’m also a little undivided on whether this is cool or scary.

Google Maps- Your timeline

Google translate was the most helpful app I have ever used. While on a recent trip, I was unsure if I would always have access to internet connection. You can download the language needed for offline use. If you find yourself in a store unable to translate the words, simply open up the app and tap camera icon, locate the text you would like to translate and the app will translate it right on the screen.

Google Translate camera option

Google Translate. Users can highlight text with their finger.

 

Lastly, one of the most powerful apps out there and also forgotten: Chrome remote desktop. The app allows you connect remotely to your desktop and gives access to programs and files. All that is needed is a desktop chrome extension on the computer and can be set up with a pin.

Chrome Remote Desktop

These are some of the Google apps that can be super helpful, so be sure to check them out.