Two recent innovations that have caught my eye:

1) Uber takes the leap on competition with its driverless cars test fleet

In the race to perfect driverless cars, Uber has upped the ante with the first driverless cars test for the general public.

The Uber Advanced Technologies Center (ATC) launched its test program in Pittsburgh last week with a fleet of Ford Fusions packed with features that allow them to navigate on their own.

Thankfully an Uber engineer will sit in the driver’s seat and seize control if needed.

Read more here

2) Instagram Stories – a copycat of Snapchat’s “My Story”

Since Snapchat introduced stories, Instagram has finally jumped on the craze with its copycat feature.

Maybe it will help Instagram become Snapchat for adults?

If you haven’t tried it yet, and are wondering what the “+” sign in the top left of the App is with people’s profile pictures below it in a slideshow, then click on it.

You can take pictures or video and write over the top of them with the writing tool. Then simply post it and it will appear in the slideshow, then disappear from after 24 hours. You can also hide the story (or portions of it) from followers.

Will this be a boost for brands who seek to push more and more offers at people in social platforms? Or will it be a losing battle ground? Read more here

FYI for the stats people:

  • Instagram has 500m active monthly users, 300m active daily, and now 250m users on its Direct Messaging feature.
  • Snapchat grew exponentially from approximately 35m active monthly users when it introduced “My Story” back in October 2013, to now over 150m active daily users!

Have you been inspired recently by any other innovations?

PS – and a week after writing this post, Snapchat changes its name to Snap Inc and claims to be a tech lifestyle company.

Hot off the production line is a sunglass range, Spectacles, that can record 10-second clips, which can then be uploaded to SnapChat Memories via wifi. Read more here