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Global Tech Roundup: Facebook is now a trillion-dollar company



The first week of July has been a fund filled one. From VC fundraising to initial public offerings (IPOs) and startup acquisitions, the whole tech industry was stocked with impressive news.

Below we have curated some of the major stories around the globe you might have missed.

Facebook hits $1 trillion market cap

Facebook has surpassed the $1 trillion market capitalization mark for the first time ever. The social network giant hit $355.64 per share and a market cap of around $1.008 trillion by close of trade on Monday, 28th June.

The social media company’s stock rose by over 4% after a federal court dismissed an antitrust lawsuit against the social media company. The judge found the FTC did not provide enough evidence that Facebook holds a monopoly power.

Global Tech Roundup: Facebook is now a Trillion Dollar company

The Federal Trade Commission’s 2020 antitrust lawsuit had alleged Facebook used illegal anticompetitive practices to maintain a monopoly in social networking.

Facebook held its initial public offering in May 2012, debuting with a market cap of $104 billion. Now it’s worth over $ 1 trillion.

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With the latest milestone, the company becomes the fifth US company to surpass $1 trillion in market value, joining Apple, Microsoft, Amazon and Google’s parent company, Alphabet.

Duolingo files to go public

Popular language learning app, Duolingo has officially filed to go public. The company was last valued at about $2.4 billion so the IPO is expected to raise its valuation over that number especially after it reported a 129% revenue growth in 2020.

Co-founded by the inventor of CAPTCHA and reCAPTCHA, Luis von Ahn, and Severin Hacker, the language learning company has seen significant growth since its establishment. It has raised $183.3 million in venture capital investment.

Global Tech Roundup: Facebook is now a Trillion Dollar company

In its S-1 filing, the company provided a placeholder $100 million figure for the funds it expects to raise. It is expected that Duolingo will kick off the Q3 2021 IPO season.

Duolingo plans to list on the NASDAQ stock exchange using the ticker symbol, DUOL.

TikTok increases max video length to 3 minutes

TikTok is expanding to allow for longer videos. The company has announced that it will roll out the option to create videos of up to 3 minutes in length.

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This is up from the 60 seconds in max length, after initially expanding from 15-second clips.

TikTok said it decided to expand its max video length based on feedback it heard from its creator community.

“For some kinds of content, creators wanted more time and flexibility when filming — like when they were filming cooking demos, beauty tutorials, educational content and comedic sketches,” the company explained

SpaceX lands first stage onshore for first time in 2021

This week, SpaceX launched 88 satellites into orbit. This is the 20th Falcon 9 launch in 2021 and the first launch this year to feature the first stage returning to land onshore, rather than on a drone ship at sea.

The first stage booster separated at around 3:34 PM ET and returned to Cape Canaveral and successfully landed around eight minutes after liftoff.

Global Tech Roundup: Facebook is now a Trillion Dollar company

As this was SpaceX’s 20th launch this year (and 127th mission to date), the company will probably surpass last year’s record of 26 launches.

The load included 85 satellites for external customers, as well as three Starlink satellites. The Transporter launches are part of the company’s rideshare business model. 

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Discord acquires augmented reality startup Ubiquity6

Gaming chat app giant, Discord has acquired augmented reality startup Ubiquity6 for an undisclosed sum.

The AR startup had raised $37.5 million from a series of top investors including Benchmark, First Round, Kleiner Perkins and Google’s Gradient Ventures.

Global Tech Roundup: Facebook is now a Trillion Dollar company

Established in 2017, Ubiquity6’s aim was to build an app that would be the central way mobile phone users would browse augmented reality content.

In late 2019, the startup launched Displayland, which aimed to gamify the process of 3D scanning physical environments with a smartphone’s camera.

However, mass adoption was hampered by a mobile AR market. Recently the company pivoted from augmented reality to building a desktop platform that allowed users to play simple online party games together remotely.

You can check out other news that happened during the week here. Have a nice weekend!!

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Enabling developers to create innovative AIs on Messenger and WhatsApp





Every week over 1 billion people connect with businesses on our messaging apps. Many of these conversations are made possible by the thousands of developers who build innovative and engaging experiences on Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp.

Since opening access to our Llama family of large language models, we’ve seen lots of momentum and innovation with more than 30 million downloads to date. As our messaging services continue to evolve, we believe the technology from Llama and other generative AI models have the potential to enhance business messaging through more natural, conversational experiences.

At Connect Meta announced that developers will be able to build third-party AIs – a term we use to refer to our generative AI-powered assistants – for our messaging services.

We’re making it easy for any developer to get started, so we’re simplifying the developer onboarding process and providing access to APIs for AIs that make it possible to build new conversational experiences within our messaging apps.

All developers will be able to access the new onboarding experience and features on Messenger in the coming weeks. For WhatsApp, we’ll be opening a Beta program in November – if you’re interested in participating please sign up to the waitlist here to learn more.

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We’ll keep everyone updated as we make these tools available to more developers later this year. We look forward to your feedback and seeing what you create.

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Introducing Facebook Graph API v18.0 and Marketing API v18.0





Today, we are releasing Facebook Graph API v18.0 and Marketing API v18.0. As part of this release, we are highlighting changes below that we believe are relevant to parts of our developer community. These changes include announcements, product updates, and notifications on deprecations that we believe are relevant to your application(s)’ integration with our platform.

For a complete list of all changes and their details, please visit our changelog.

General Updates

Consolidation of Audience Location Status Options for Location Targeting

As previously announced in May 2023, we have consolidated Audience Location Status to our current default option of “People living in or recently in this location” when choosing the type of audience to reach within their Location Targeting selections. This update reflects a consolidation of other previously available options and removal of our “People traveling in this location” option.

We are making this change as part of our ongoing efforts to deliver more value to businesses, simplify our ads system, and streamline our targeting options in order to increase performance efficiency and remove options that have low usage.

This update will apply to new or duplicated campaigns. Existing campaigns created prior to launch will not be entered in this new experience unless they are in draft mode or duplicated.

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Add “add_security_recommendation” and “code_expiration_minutes” to WA Message Templates API

Earlier this year, we released WhatsApp’s authentication solution which enabled creating and sending authentication templates with native buttons and preset authentication messages. With the release of Graph API v18, we’re making improvements to the retrieval of authentication templates, making the end-to-end authentication template process easier for BSPs and businesses.

With Graph API v18, BSPs and businesses can have better visibility into preset authentication message template content after creation. Specifically, payloads will return preset content configuration options, in addition to the text used by WhatsApp. This improvement can enable BSPs and businesses to build “edit” UIs for authentication templates that can be constructed on top of the API.

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Note that errors may occur when upgrading to Graph API v18 if BSPs or businesses are taking the entire response from the GET request and providing it back to the POST request to update templates. To resolve, the body/header/footer text fields should be dropped before passing back into the API.

Re-launching dev docs and changelogs for creating Call Ads

  • Facebook Reels Placement for Call Ads

    Meta is releasing the ability to deliver Call Ads through the Facebook Reels platform. Call ads allow users to call businesses in the moment of consideration when they view an ad, and help businesses drive more complex discussions with interested users. This is an opportunity for businesses to advertise with call ads based on peoples’ real-time behavior on Facebook. Under the Ad set Level within Ads Manager, businesses can choose to add “Facebook Reels” Under the Placements section.
  • Re-Launching Call Ads via API

    On September 12, 2023, we’re providing updated guidance on how to create Call Ads via the API. We are introducing documentation solely for Call Ads, so that 3P developers can more easily create Call Ads’ campaigns and know how to view insights about their ongoing call ad campaigns, including call-related metrics. In the future, we also plan to support Call Add-ons via our API platform. Developers should have access to the general permissions necessary to create general ads in order to create Call Ads via the API platform.

    Please refer to developer documentation for additional information.

Deprecations & Breaking Changes

Graph API changes for user granular permission feature

We are updating two graph API endpoints for WhatsAppBusinessAccount. These endpoints are as follows:

  • Retrieve message templates associated with WhatsAppBusiness Account
  • Retrieve phone numbers associated with WhatsAppBusiness Account

With v18, we are rolling out a new feature “user granular permission”. All existing users who are already added to WhatsAppBusinessAccount will be backfilled and will continue to have access (no impact).

The admin has the flexibility to change these permissions. If the admin changes the permission and removes access to view message templates or phone numbers for one of their users, that specific user will start getting an error message saying you do not have permission to view message templates or phone numbers on all versions v18 and older.

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Deprecate legacy metrics naming for IG Media and User Insights

Starting on September 12, Instagram will remove duplicative and legacy, insights metrics from the Instagram Graph API in order to share a single source of metrics to our developers.

This new upgrade reduces any confusion as well as increases the reliability and quality of our reporting.

After 90 days of this launch (i.e. December 11, 2023), we will remove all these duplicative and legacy insights metrics from the Instagram Graph API on all versions in order to be more consistent with the Instagram app.

We appreciate all the feedback that we’ve received from our developer community, and look forward to continuing to work together.

Please review the media insights and user insights developer documentation to learn more.

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Deprecate all Facebook Wi-Fi v1 and Facebook Wi-Fi v2 endpoints

Facebook Wi-Fi was designed to improve the experience of connecting to Wi-Fi hotspots at businesses. It allowed a merchant’s customers to get free Wi-Fi simply by checking in on Facebook. It also allowed merchants to control who could use their Wi-Fi and for how long, and integrated with ads to enable targeting to customers who had used the merchant’s Wi-Fi. This product was deprecated on June 12, 2023. As the partner notice period has ended, all endpoints used by Facebook Wi-Fi v1 and Facebook Wi-Fi v2 have been deprecated and removed.

API Version Deprecations:

As part of Facebook’s versioning schedule for Graph API and Marketing API, please note the upcoming deprecations:

Graph API

  • September 14, 2023: Graph API v11.0 will be deprecated and removed from the platform
  • February 8, 2024: Graph API v12.0 will be deprecated and removed from the platform
  • May 28, 2024: Graph API v13.0 will be deprecated and removed from the platform

Marketing API

  • September 20, 2023: Marketing API v14.0 will be deprecated and removed from the platform
  • September 20, 2023: Marketing API v15.0 will be deprecated and removed from the platform
  • February 06, 2024: Marketing API v16.0 will be deprecated and removed from the platform

To avoid disruption to your business, we recommend migrating all calls to the latest API version that launched today.

Facebook Platform SDK

As part of our 2-year deprecation schedule for Platform SDKs, please note the upcoming deprecations and sunsets:

  • October 2023: Facebook Platform SDK v11.0 or below will be sunset
  • February 2024: Facebook Platform SDK v12.0 or below will be sunset

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Allowing Users to Promote Stories as Ads (via Marketing API)





Before today (August 28, 2023), advertisers could not promote images and/or videos used in Instagram Stories as ads via the Instagram Marketing API. This process created unwanted friction for our partners and their customers.

After consistently hearing about this pain point from our developer community, we have removed this unwanted friction for advertisers and now allow users to seamlessly promote their image and/or video media used in Instagram Stories as ads via the Instagram Marketing API as of August 28, 2023.

We appreciate all the feedback received from our developer community, and hope to continue improving your experience.

Please review the developer documentation to learn more.

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