In an era where technology has picked up speed and maintained momentum thus far, it’s easy to feel like you aren’t in control. Knowing that by using apps and websites you are essentially giving up personal information and forsaking your privacy, people can perceive themselves as simply data points for tech companies. However, it’s imperative to know that our opinion matters. After all, what’s the point of producing products and services that consumers won’t like? In order to remain competitive and survive in the market, companies have to listen to their customers’ needs and demands. These recent updates from WhatsApp, Instagram and Apple prove that our requirements are still very much a focal point in a company’s decision-making process:

WhatsApp has added a new feature that allows users to delete messages they sent as long as it’s within seven minutes. PHOTO COURTESY PIXABAY USER WEBSTER2703


1. WhatsApp says, “Yes takebacks!”

The app’s recent update includes an option to revoke a message within seven minutes of sending it. Let’s take a moment to comprehend this. No more panic-fueled efforts to explain yourself to your mom when you send her a message that was obviously meant for your friend. The “Delete for everyone” feature replaces your message with a “This message was deleted” text instead. Unless your friends and family are quick, responsive texters, you should be rest-assured that this feature will work its magic. No more embarrassing encounters; the only thing you’d have to consider is your recipient asking you what you ended up retracting.


2. Instagram expands its linguistic skills

Instagram has been fairly up to date with its languages, hosting more than two dozen language options on the app. However, all of these languages were written from left to right. Their inclusion of some languages that are read and written from right to left has been a long time coming. Given that Instagram has a wide array of users that belong to different ethnicities and regions of the world, it’s great that they’re beginning to cater to these consumer groups. After all, the company’s aim is to connect the world through photos; making the app as user friendly as possible for people communicating in Hebrew, Farsi and Arabic is a great step forward.


3. Apple Watch improves your workout session

The Apple Watch Series 3 lets its LTE-enabled users stream music directly on the accessory. Most of my friends who own an Apple Watch claim to have bought it for its usefulness in the gym. The lack of a feature to stream music directly via the watch was a reason for criticism amongst several users; it diminished the utility of the expensive gadget when working out. But now, users don’t have to bring their phone to the gym if they want to listen to music while working out. After all, the convenience of the Apple Watch was one of its highly marketed selling points. Now although the streaming ability is restricted to Apple Music, this update means that customers can finally use the wearable technology for the real reason they bought it.