Weekly Digital News Roundup: APRIL 1 – APRIL 8
MLB Approves Wearable Technology For In-Game Use
- According to Engadget, major league players can now wear an elbow sleeve and heart rate monitor during games this season. As the Major League Baseball season kicked off this week, the league’s rules committee will now allow “wearables” to hit the diamond for the first time.
- During games, players can wear a Motus Baseball Sleeve to keep tabs on elbow stress and the Zephyr Bioharness heart and breathing monitor. For now, those are the only two approved devices for in-game use while gadgets like Fitbit are still prohibited.
- The idea is to use the sleeve and heart rate sensor for early injury detection by tracking a player’s habits. However, the collected data can’t be transmitted during games, so teams will have to download it after the ninth inning. Details on a pitcher’s throwing motion during a game could be used to prevent serious injuries that lead to procedures like Tommy John surgery. To help ease privacy concerns from the player’s union, all of the gathered data can only be used internally and it will be shared with the player. While some may welcome the use of tech on the diamond, not all players are fans of the change.
Google Removes Taliban App from Play Store
- According to Mashable, Google removed an app created by the Taliban from its Play Store on Saturday. The app was reportedly published to Google Play on April 1st, 2016. Despite implementing a stricter app review process last year, Google has some work to do when it comes to its developers policies.
- A spokesperson for Google confirmed the app had been removed but declined to comment further on the app in question. “While we don’t comment on specific apps, we can confirm that our policies are designed to provide a great experience for users and developers. That’s why we remove apps from Google Play that violate those policies”. Google’s policy for the Play Store prohibits apps that promote hate speech, violence or illegal activities.
- A Taliban spokesperson confirmed that the app, written in the Pashto language, was created by the organization. It reportedly contained videos and other messages from the group. This is far from the first time Google has removed an app for violating its policies. The company removed two apps that simulated bombing Gaza in 2014 and removed several apps with Confederate flag imagery.
Pinterest Is Taking Sponsored Ads Global
- According to Business Insider, Pinterest is now pushing into international markets. The San Francisco-based Pinterest introduced “Sponsored Pins” about 18 months ago, making money by letting brands or companies pay to display advertising in the form of posts “pinned” to virtual bulletin boards at the service.
- Many companies or marketers are already on Pinterest, with some three-quarters of the content posted on there coming from company websites or corporate blogs. Paying for Sponsored Pins can get them displayed more often, and aimed at targeted audiences. For example, a pin paid for by a shoe company could display some of its selection to a Pinterest user who has searched for footwear. Pinterest ranks of advertisers in the US is already reported to be in the “tens of thousands,” including many small and medium enterprises. Founded in 2010, Pinterest boasts more than 100 million users, some 45 percent of them outside the United States.