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Since Elon Musk bought the social media platform Twitter in a headline-grabbing deal worth $44 billion he has fired the entire board, fired the CEO and most of the senior executive team and hinted he will slash at least 50% of the jobs in the ailing tech firm. 

Afterall, an effective board member acts as a critical friend to a CEO and the executive team. A strong board member is someone who can guide a CEO away from potential landmines and onto pastures green. 

Is he wrong?

Musk is a man watched the world over for his boldness, bluntness, and his continuing ability to cause a stir in global markets.  

Some laud his get-ahead attitude; others criticise or even fear his unpredictable nature and what it could mean for their long-term prospects.

His relationship with boards has always been one of the fascinating aspects of his business career because it pits this unpredictability directly against people who want everything predicted as far as possible.

Here we have a man who is not afraid to take risks, frequently at odds with individuals whose job it is to study risk as they plan for success and prepare for failure. These two personas can rarely operate without conflict.

Visibly more robust in its opposition to Musk, Twitter’s board is adamant that the acquisition deal it signed with the business magnate should be completed in full: no backtracking, no reduced prices, and no extensive due diligence beyond the norm.

So as Musk’s court battle with that board begins, let’s take a look at his track record.

Does Elon Musk have a strategy?

Elon Musk went from barely affording living expenses in 2008 to becoming the wealthiest man in the world by 2023. Would anybody honestly believe that this turnaround was due to good fortunes alone?

That said, many would be forgiven for thinking that Musk doesn’t have a personal business strategy. His decisions sometimes appear to be governed less by structure and more by whims. Other businesspeople don’t amass wealth and power this way.

But at the end of the day, Musk does have a strategy. His success rests on its shoulders. Whether that strategy is carefully planned from the start or is merely a system that has fallen into place, it exists, even if it’s a way of working that boards wouldn’t like.

Musk’s strategic callsigns

Elon Musk is not that keen on business plans.

 This is perhaps the factor that would frighten boards the most. He used them in his early days but has since dismissed them as “always wrong” and now insists he “doesn’t bother” with them. In other words, his conscious choice is to avoid the traditional avenue toward profit and success.

He moves fast.

Twitter is an excellent example. His drive to buy the social media giant has seen several milestones since April alone. He’s not one to wait around for proper due diligence. Instead, he’ll pinpoint the parts of a business decision that

he

needs clarity over. If those around him need clarity on other things, the jury’s out on whether they’ll be addressed.

He embraces his passions.

 Musk will go for industries where he feels the drive to succeed. Here, it’s not just motivated by profit but by his convictions – tech innovation, greener vehicles, social media – all of these illustrate his goals.

If Musk sees a gap in the market, if he finds a personal attachment to it, and if he feels money can be made from doing something about it, he’ll act.

He usually hints and rarely tells.

Musk rarely divulges all the information that boards and investors would expect to see when a decision is announced. In 2023, for example, he announced that Tesla could go private at $420 per share without confirming the source of investor funding.  

How dangerous can his tweets be?

Few people have the influence that Elon Musk does; that x-factor ability to influence the markets with thoughts alone … as long as they’re served up in tweet form.

There have been no fewer than 15 occasions when Musk’s tweets have altered markets. Sometimes, he has sparked an upward trend, sometimes downward. But without a doubt, he has more than proven himself to influence the value of products, even if he has nothing to do with them.

Highlights of Musk’s influential tweets

He made the value of e-commerce company Etsy surge to record highs after tweeting that he “kinda loves” it.

GameStop stock surged by around 50% after tweeting the word “gamestonk” and directing to the Reddit page of Wallstreetbets, where news and speculation around GameStop’s volatile share price were rife.

He added 14% to the value of bitcoin simply by adding “#bitcoin’ to his Twitter profile bio.

He caused a massive slump in the value of common cryptocurrencies when he announced that his own company, Tesla, would no longer accept bitcoin as payment.

He added 11% value to Tesla itself after that 2023 announcement that he was “considering” taking the company private. This got him in trouble for suspected market manipulation with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) after it was announced later that same month that the privatisation would not go ahead.

Musk’s tweets are nothing special in themselves. In many ways, they could be the words of an average business enthusiast tweeting at home during a slow day at work. But from Musk’s profile, those words carry weight. He has proven this more than enough times.

Are those tweets dangerous? To many, no. But to a risk-conscious board member, the answer would probably be yes, purely because of that unquestionable weight and the impact it can have.

Why doesn’t he want a strong board?

When someone joins a board, they learn the importance of good planning, due diligence, and actions that best serve the company. Any board member working with Elon Musk will know the same information.

Pit this against Musk’s unpredictability and his lack of conventional business strategy, and you get conditions favourable for serious conflict. This is likely a significant factor in why the business magnate doesn’t want to associate with solid boards.

Tesla is the shining example

His history at Tesla puts this in the limelight. Here was a board that worked in the shadows as a rubber-stamp body for years, only emerging to greater prominence in 2023 as criticism of its inner workings – and its ties to Musk – increased.

Musk prefers a rubber-stamp body – one that understands his way of working and supports it. Most boards, for now, are trained to think differently.

Is not having a strong board a threat to his businesses?

Ultimately, yes. As the old Silicon Valley mantra goes, “a good board doesn’t make a company, but a bad board will kill it.”

It’s essential, though, to distinguish between a bad board and a weak one. A weak board simply means the CEO dominates decision-making. Many companies have operated in this way over the years, and some have produced excellent results. Many more, however, have not.

A CEO-dominated board means that an essential organ of opposition is removed. Suddenly, the board does not fulfil its role of objectively judging business decisions and criticising strategies when it feels necessary.

If this is the kind of board Musk wants, he runs the risk of keeping those challenges buried, abandoning a potentially vital source of guidance or warnings.

In summary

Musk has his style, and he has historically shaped boards to match it. Right now, the world waits to see if he will soon take control of Twitter, which has already proven itself to be a more robust board than he’s used to.

If the acquisition deal is forced through in court, then this may be just the beginning of a new chapter in Musk’s relationship with boards. Will he bow to the board’s pressure, will the board bow to his, or will there be a compromise?

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Thom Mayne: Inside His Diamond Mind

Yes. When you look at a school, it will tell you about the status of education in that culture.

The designer of Diamond Ranch High School is about as busy as an international architect can be these days, flying constantly from his office in Southern California to New York, Boston, Madrid, Paris, and Shanghai. He’s racked up three million mileage points on American Airlines alone. Edutopia got him to slow down recently for an interview at Morphosis , his Santa Monica architectural firm. The iconoclastic Mayne proved to be as provocative in making conversation as in designing buildings.

Although critics have lavished praise on Diamond Ranch, not all the students and teachers feel as enthusiastic about it. Does that bother you?

Whether they like it or they don’t like it doesn’t matter. That’s not important. It would be like seeing the lunar landing module and critiquing what it looks like. It got three people to the Moon and back. You can love a building or hate it. I couldn’t care less. But it has to work.

If you hadn’t had any design constraints, would you have done anything different?

If I’d had a free hand, I would have made every room different, with a character more or less connected to function.

You obviously didn’t design a school for the money, but, rather, to make a difference. What was your own school experience like?

High school was meaningless to me. I spent a huge amount of time in the halls. My counselor said he didn’t think I should go to college. I said, “Screw you!”

It’s probably worth noting that the counselors’ offices at Diamond Ranch are so small that someone has to stand up before the door can be opened. Would you call aspects of your design subversive?

I want to alter what I see as a complacent and somehow irrelevant system. To a lot of people, I’m a sixties kind of guy. I’m a bad boy, but it doesn’t take a lot to be a bad boy in this culture, what’s called in Spanish a chico malo-kind of a rascal. When we talk about education, that’s who you should be.

I’m all about attacking complacency. There’s nothing worse than a child who is already beaten down and passive, so I’m totally comfortable if this work is moving toward the type of inquiry that develops rascals. Teachers should be looking for vibrancy and creativity and nurturing curious minds. I could do no better if that happens.

If you were to tell Diamond High students about the school’s legacy, what would you say to them?

I’d say, “I left this for you to prove you can do what you want to do. Don’t listen to all these people who tell you that you cannot accomplish something. I’m going to tell you, you can do anything you want to do, and you will do it. And I proved it to you.”

You took chances with this design. Some of it works, some doesn’t. Is its experimental nature too risky in the end?

Today’s experiment is tomorrow’s history.

Best Webcams 2023: Top Picks And Expert Buying Advice

However, most laptops still ship with a 720p webcam, so a 1080p webcam can be a step up—what better way to stand out from the pack on your next Teams call? There are even premium models with integrated ring lights for a few dollars more. Other, more expensive options feature 4K resolution or higher refresh rates, which will make a noticeable difference to both you, your friends, and your colleagues.

We haven’t tested every one of these webcams, but we’ve picked the best webcams based on specs and bundled extras, including our own reviews. You can also refer to our separate story on the best Windows Hello webcams to buy a webcam for videoconferencing and to log you in to your PC. We’ve taken two recommendations from that list, however, and added them here: a premium and budget webcam with Windows Hello. You might be surprised to see one recommended as a best webcam, period — because it is.

Anker PowerConf C200 – Best overall webcam

Pros

2K (1440p) resolution

Adjustable field of view

Solid low-light performance

18-month warranty

Cons

Lacks 60fps support

Anker software is necessary for full control

Color balance is middling

Best Prices Today:

We’ve replaced the Logitech C920e as our best webcam pick if only because Anker simply offers so much more for less. First off, Anker’s PowerConf C200 provides an upgraded 1440p resolution, better than 1080p to make you look clearer and more professional. Second, this webcam offers an adjustable field of view (65, 78, and 95 degrees) meaning that you can manually crop out portions of the background you don’t want to be visible.

The PowerConf C200 includes noise-cancelling mics and an integrated privacy shutter, which turns off the whole device—a plus, if you’re concerned about a bad guy somehow hacking your mic and listening to your conversations with your family, boss, and pets. You can even adjust the mic pickup to focus on you, versus omnidirectionally.

Reviewers have some concerns about the color accuracy, but the low-light performance makes up for it—you shouldn’t need a ring light. For all this, and for about $60? That’s a solid deal. There’s an upgraded C300 model for an additional $40, but we think this is a better deal.

Logitech C920e Business Webcam – Best overall webcam, runner-up

Pros

Three-year warranty

Exposure and color controls

78.5-degree viewing angle

1080p

Cons

Lacks 60fps support

Best Prices Today:

The 1080p Logitech C920e webcam is the most recent version of the venerable Logitech C920, probably the most iconic webcam of the last few years. Confused about whether you should buy the C920e or the C920s? Logitech describes the C920e as a business camera, and the C920s as the consumer version—they’re otherwise identical, save that the C920e has a three-year warranty versus a two-year warranty, while costing the same. The C920e reportedly offers lighting and color controls that the C920s does not, as well.

Both cameras use a narrower 78.5-degree viewing angle, which focuses on your face better than webcams that use a 90-degree viewing angle. It’s also an autofocus camera, which helps justify its higher price. The C920e connects to your laptop using a USB-A cable measuring 5 feet.

Aside from a lack of 60fps support, this is still a great webcam. We prefer it, in fact, to Logitech’s most recent webcam, the Logitech Brio 305, which is slightly more expensive and lacks the 1.2X zoom the C920e offers.

A number of Asian companies are starting to match what the C920e offers on paper, but its superb video quality could be harder to mimic. You can refer to our Logitech C920 review for more information.

Monoprice 2K USB Webcam – Best budget webcam

Pros

Fantastic price

2K resolution, with autofocus

Works well as a laptop webcam

Bonus ring light

Cons

Review unit broke after a fall

Tends to overexpose the user

Lousy mic quality

DIY privacy shutter

Best Prices Today:

Monoprice appears to have discounted this webcam to $34.99, and for that price it’s hard to pass up. Our review of this webcam, below, points out its flaws: It tends to overexpose the user, even without the integrated ring light, and the mic quality is poor. The DIY privacy shutter is a little goofy but works fine.

Honestly, if you’re the kind of person who can look past a few quirks, there’s a lot to like here. The 2K (1440p) / 30Hz resolution looks even sharper than a 1080p cam, for one. You will tend to look blown out a bit if you use and are lit by an external display. As a plain-Jane webcam that hooks onto your laptop screen, however, the white balance evens out just fine.

The mics are one of its irredeemable flaws, though. If your laptop has an integrated mic, you may find that it’s better than what Monoprice’s webcam offers. After our review, we accidentally flipped it backwards off the display, and it stopped working.

Read our full

eMeet SmartCam C960 – Best budget webcam runner-up

Pros

Great value

1080p, 30Hz

Cons

Not so great in low-light scenarios, especially with color

Middling mic

Stick-on privacy shutter

Best Prices Today:

The eMeet SmartCam C960 is the most popular webcam on Amazon at press time, and for good reason—it’s been around since the early days of the pandemic.

The 1080p Smartcam C960 used to be a 1080p, 30Hz webcam that shipped with a small tripod. The upgraded model now offers a “stickum” DIY privacy shutter, which it lacked before.

We test webcams in both a dimmer, basement office as well as in a brighter, upstairs room. We’d recommend the latter as the best environment for using the eMeet SmartCam C960, though you can buy a ring light to help brighten the image. (You can also just use a monitor, and just use a blank Windows Notepad window to generate a bright white box.) This is what a budget webcam gets you: a great price, albeit with compromises.

Read our full

Anker B600 Video Bar – Best premium webcam

Pros

65, 78, and 95 degree viewing angles

Built-in speaker, microphone, and light bar

Adjustable settings for brightness, contrast, and more

Privacy shutter

Swivel mount

Cons

30fps

Too heavy for use with a laptop screen

Best Prices Today:

The price tag on Anker’s premium B600 video bar may cause double-takes. But this webcam packs in the features. Inside is a 2K resolution camera, four-microphone array, speaker, and built-in light that also serves as a privacy guard—and you get a high level of control over all the hardware.

Capacitive buttons on the device let you mute the mic, adjust the intensity of the light, and turn the light on and off. Though a bit fiddly, they work and solidly cover the basics. There’s an LED light that indicates the mic’s status, too.

The companion AnkerWork app expands your settings. Choosing between viewing angles of 65, 78, and 95 degrees is fast, as is downscaling the default resolution from 2K to 1080p, 720p, or 360p. You can also tune the brightness, sharpness, saturation, and contrast of your video feed, alter the light bar’s color temperature, and set the light’s brightness to auto adjust based on ambient conditions.

This webcam is an extremely nice all-in-one solution, so long as you’re parked at a desk. (This video bar and its swiveling mount require a monitor for proper support.) The camera is clear and crisp, the speaker gets plenty loud, the mic holds its own against many laptops and earbuds, and the light is handy in dark rooms or for balancing out harsh backlighting. You can use the B600 as a speakerphone, too, eliminating problems with other callers hearing themselves as they speak.

OBSBOT Tiny PTZ 4K – Best premium 4K webcam

Pros

4K webcam with 1080p/60Hz options

Extensive configurability

Excellent 360-degree face tracking as you move around a room

Manual pan and zoom

Good mics

Cons

No privacy shutter, just a privacy mode

Autofocus can be slightly soft

Best Prices Today:

The OBSBOT Tiny 4K certainly ranks among the best webcams you can buy, 4K or not, period. It offers so much: 4K video, a 60fps option (albeit at 1080p), and the real magic: an automated gimbal that physically rotates and dips the webcam to center your face.

The Razer Kiyo Pro Ultra, a competing 4K camera, provides what we’d consider to be a superior picture. But the OBSBOT simply offers more for less, combined with a really well-designed software utility to get the most out of your webcam in any situation. We’ve used it for making video calls, but anyone interested in streaming should also consider this webcam, as well as the Razer Kiyo Pro.

Read our full

Razer Kiyo Pro Ultra – Best premium 4K webcam runner-up

Pros

‘DSLR-quality’ imaging

4K options, HDR too

Terrific configurability

Lens cap as well as a privacy shield

Cons

Whew, that price!

Average mic quality

No Windows Hello

Limited purchase options; just chúng tôi for now

Best Prices Today:

The Razer Kiyo Pro Ultra claims to offer DSLR-quality images, and boy, it comes pretty close! Unfortunately, many webcams have a wispy, ghosty effect when capturing video, and you’ll find none of that here—you’ll look like a professional caught on camera. This is simply one of the best webcams you can buy, though you’ll pay for the privilege, too.

The Razer Kiyo Pro Ultra captures video at 4K at 30Hz or 1080p at 60Hz, using autofocusing technology that does a great job. HDR is also an option, though you’ll probably prefer to turn off this option. The field-of-view varies between 72 degrees and 82 degrees, depending on the resolution. Manual pan and zoom are available, but you might wonder why the camera can’t orient itself toward your face automatically. Otherwise, the Razer Synapse software offers an absolute ton of configurability.

About the only thing that could stand to be improved is the mic—you may prefer using your laptop’s mic instead.

Read our full

NexiGo N980P – Best webcam for wide-angle

Pros

60fps

120-degree viewing angle

Privacy shutter

Cons

Lack of fine adjustments

Best Prices Today:

This fixed-focus 1080p webcam captures frames at a smooth 60 frames per second, as opposed to the more standard 30fps. You’ll look smoother and more lifelike as a result. The camera also captures at a 120-degree angle, which might not be ideal for a home user but can work quite well in a living room or conference room. This webcam is very highly reviewed on Amazon, with reviewers praising it for its color balance but criticizing it for its inability to be finely adjusted.

It’s still a fixed-focus camera though—if you want an autofocusing model we’d recommend you pay about $100 for the upgraded NexiGo N680p instead.

Logitech Brio 4K Ultra HD Webcam – Best premium webcam for Windows Hello

Pros

Sharply detailed resolution with vibrant colors

Wide-angle field of view

Infrared-based facial recognition

Cons

Expensive

Best Prices Today:

If we’re being honest (and price is no object) the Dell UltraSharp webcam above would be our top pick for a Windows Hello webcam — a webcam that not only can show you off on Zoom or Teams, but can also log you in via biometric identification. But Logitech’s also feeling the heat, and it has lowered the price of its Brio 4K as a result. We can’t help but recommend it.

The Brio 4Kstill ranks highly among premium webcams, primarily because it’s one of the few autofocusing webcams that captures in 4K resolution. The Brio includes a ton of features to make you look great, and its Windows Hello support will log you in in a snap.

Read our full

MouseComputer Facial Recognition Webcam – Best budget webcam for Windows Hello

Pros

Inexpensive, but decent quality

Cons

720p resolution

You may need to disable your PC’s own webcam

Best Prices Today:

Our separate story on Windows Hello webcams offers cheaper options than the MouseComputer webcam, but the image quality of the webcam itself appears to be better—or, conversely, the competition is fudging on whether they offer true 1080p resolution. In any event, this $65 or so webcam seems to offer what you’ll need, plus Windows Hello functionality.

Users have complained that you’ll need to make sure Windows is up to date and that your webcam is directly plugged into your laptop. There’s no privacy shutter, unfortunately.

A standalone 1080p webcam can’t add Windows Hello to your system, but it can greatly improve how you look on your next Zoom call. Here’s what to look for. You’ll probably ask yourself: Should I prioritize a 60fps webcam over an autofocusing webcam? What about 4K? We’d say that if you have to choose one, prioritize a 1080p webcam, then a higher refresh rate, then jump up to 4K. If you can get more than one feature, great! Unless you’ll be moving about a lot, a fixed-focus webcam will do just fine.

You might not have thought about it, but consider, too, that looking like you’re on television will subtly lend you authority. People gravitate toward celebrities, and a 4K, 60Hz webcam is basically what your TV offers. If you’re an executive or making sales calls over Zoom or Teams, a premium webcam may give you an edge. That’s why professional streamers use them, after all.

Adjustable or fixed focus

Don’t worry about fixed-focus, as virtually all webcams have been pre-configured at a focal length that’s about the distance between your face and your laptop or monitor. You’ll need to account for this with tripods, however, or pay a little more for an autofocusing webcam. Autofocus webcams are handy for situations where you may be moving about the room, but beware distracting webcams that frequently refocus.

Higher frame rates

A standard webcam captures video at 30 frames per second, and will look “normal.” You’ll notice the smoothness of a 60fps camera though, and so will people you’re on a video call with.

Field of view (FOV) 

The camera’s field of view can vary. A 90-degree FOV helps people focus on you (and perhaps not the mess you’ve hidden off to the side). A 110-degree or higher FOV works better for group shots, although distortion can become a problem the wider your FOV gets. A 65-degree FOV may be perfect if it’s just you.

Think of a 90-degree FOV as one that would show two people seated side-by-side at what you would consider a “standard” distance from a webcam, or a foot or two. A 110-degree FOV can show three people, squeezed a bit close together. Keep in mind that many videoconferencing applications offer the option of virtual backgrounds, which eliminate visual clutter.

Privacy shutter

These devices are not a privacy threat, for the simple reason that they can be unplugged easily. Most have a flip-down privacy shutter, but you could always put tape over the camera or drape it with a dark cloth. 

Ring lights

Yes, integrated ring lights are now a thing on premium webcams, and worth the money if lighting is a challenge for you. While the integrated light will certainly help with lighting, a big bright display in front of you can serve a similar function. You can also purchase a ring light separately.

Windows Hello

You may have used Windows Hello with a fingerprint reader or another laptop. The camera simply “recognizes” you, logging you in. It’s exceptionally convenient. We have a separate article on the best Windows Hello webcams.

Tripod bundle

With so many webcams on the market, manufacturers are trying hard to differentiate their products. The new trend is a small tripod, which gives you more options for mounting the camera. Not all webcams include this, Normally, however, you can simply clip the webcam to the top of a display or a laptop with its “jaws” clamp.

AI

There’s a potential wild card that may be attached to webcams in the future: artificial intelligence, specifically Windows Studio Effects. Right now, the current Surface Pro 9 (5G) uses the AI capabilities in the Qualcomm Snapdragon processor to apply background blue, automatic panning effects, and more. (Our review discusses this.) Other laptops that use Intel Core and AMD Ryzen processors don’t include AI capabilities—yet. Specific models in the 13th-gen mobile Core and AMD Ryzen 7000 Mobile series include some basic AI capabilities, and future processors in both families may offer AI capabilities and therefore Windows Studio Effects.

What this essentially means is that we’d expect future webcams to pan and zoom automatically to keep you in the frame. Few do this today, however.

FAQ

1.

Do you need Wi-Fi for a webcam?

Yes and no. These webcams all connect to your computer directly, via a USB port, and you can record video from them while offline. Your computer will then need to be connected to either ethernet or to Wi-Fi for you to be able to chat with a friend or business partner, however.

2.

Can a webcam work without a computer?

Some webcams can work without a computer, but not all of them. USB webcams, featured here, connect via USB to a computer and require it to operate. USB webcams are most often those used for video chat or live streaming from your computer on websites such as Twitch.

IP webcams however, can connect directly to a network, router, or modem and do not require a computer at all in order to work. IP webcams are most often used as security cameras or for live feeds that upload directly to the cloud. Those are separate products, however, and not the same webcams we’re talking about here.

3.

How do I connect my webcam to the internet?

For USB webcams, it will be as simple as plugging the camera into your computer’s USB port, downloading the firmware, and then connecting to the internet via your computer.

4.

What software do I need to connect my webcam?

What Is Whatsapp Business And How Does It Differ From Original Whatsapp?

WhatsApp Business has been in the news since last year, when Facebook officially announced it and well, WhatsApp Business is finally here in 2023. Yes, the WhatsApp Business app is finally live on the Play Store but what exactly does it bring and how is it different to the WhatsApp Messenger? Well, without further ado, let’s take a look at closer look at WhatsApp Business and find out how it compares to its more established counterpart:

What is WhatsApp Business?

WhatsApp Business is a new feature that the Facebook-owned company has been testing for several weeks now, although, it’s availability has been restricted to a very few beta testers up until now. As the name suggests, WhatsApp Business is aimed at businesses that may want to use the wildly-popular instant messaging app to connect with their clients. Businesses that sign up to join the platform will be able to use the service to provide their customers with updates about timings, confirmations and other info.

According to latest reports, the WhatsApp will keep the consumer-centric original application separate from its upcoming business-related service that will reportedly be launched as an entirely different app called ‘WhatsApp Business’. In fact, as can be seen from the image below, the company is apparently planning to launch not one but two different services as part of its foray into the enterprise sector, by separating its offerings for small businesses and large enterprises. While details are hard to come by at this stage, the former will likely be offered free-of-charge (at least initially) while the latter is expected to be a paid-for service.

WhatsApp vs WhatsApp Business: Key Features

Before we get to the key features of WhatsApp Business, lets get this one thing out of the way: the two apps will reportedly look and feel fairly similar in terms of their user interface if the leaked images are anything to go by, but one of the key areas of difference will be the logo that will reportedly feature a white ‘B’ inside the familiar green conversation bubble instead of the telephone receiver that we’re used to in the general app.

WhatsApp Business comes with quite a features that are simply not present in the original WhatsApp, including the creation of a Business Profile, which will require users to fill in their ‘Business Description’, ‘Website’, ‘Address’ etc. One of the interesting feature that the new service is expected to bring is Chat Migration which, as its  name suggests, allows users to transfer their chats from one device to another or even one account to another. The company has accounted for various scenarios that include using the app on a single device or multiple devices at the same time. Users will also reportedly be able to use WhatsApp and WhatsApp Business on the same device simultaneously, but only with different chúng tôi interesting point here is that users will also be able to use landline numbers to create WhatsApp Business accounts; a privilege not yet available for regular WhatsApp users. Implemented correctly, the various permutations and combinations that promises to allow business owners to separate their business accounts from personal ones is certainly a welcome step, as it would help people keep their personal and professional lives separate.

A couple of other predictable business-oriented features that will reportedly be available with WhatsApp Business are Auto Responses and Analytics. With the first, users will be able to customize ‘away messages’ that will go out automatically when clients send messages outside business hours, while the latter will provide business owners with detailed info on important statistics like the number of messages sent, received, delivered and read.

How do I Sign up for WhatsApp Business?

WhatsApp Business isn’t available for download on the Google Play Store right now, but you can sign up to be a tester by completing a simple survey. In case your request is accepted, you will reportedly be able to access the new app on the Play Store at this link once you’re logged in with the same Google account. You can also download the APK file from APKMirror, but to be able to actually use the service, your request still needs to be accepted by WhatsApp first.

Will Things Be Any Different for Regular Users?

As a general WhatsApp user, you’ll see the same message about your chats being fully encrypted end-to-end, but you’ll also see a pop-up that will inform you about the verification status of the business account you’re trying to start a conversation with. In addition to that, you’ll also see all the account details of the business owner including image, location, business category, e-mail IDs, website(s), etc.

When Will WhatsApp Business Launch Commercially?

WhatsApp Business is now available on the Play Store but as of now, it’s limited to a few countries, like Indonesia, Italy, Mexico, the UK and the US. The company has announced that other countries like India, will get the app in the coming weeks. However, some companies in India are already on board with WhatsApp Business, BookMyShow was reportedly the first Indian company to have gotten its WhatsApp account certified as a ‘verified business account’, as symbolized by a green tick next to its name. Other companies, like Ola, OYO Rooms and various private airlines are also reportedly all set to join the list in the days to come.

SEE ALSO: 15 Cool WhatsApp Tricks You Should Be Using

WhatsApp Business: What Will it Offer Businesses and Customers?

What Are The Advantages Of Smart Boards In The Classroom?

What is a smart board used for? North Carolina-based fourth-grade teacher Riley Higgins is using a smart board in the classroom to build 21st-century learners. The language arts and social studies teacher recently asked her students, ages 9 and 10, to research a city in their state and create a multimedia project they then shared on their smart boards. The project makes kids excited to learn, and using an interactive whiteboard, she said, makes learning “fun.” These types of interactive projects recently helped her win the Teacher of the Week award from a local television station.

Today, tools that help teachers capture and keep students’ attention are invaluable. A 2023 study by Gallup found that digital tools are strongly associated with better student outcomes including ease of learning from home and expectations for learning progress. A Harvard Business Review article asserts that lack of student engagement is one of the biggest issues educators face today. Another study shows that student engagement — specifically low student engagement — is the issue most in the way of students reaching grade level, as 68% of teachers agreed.

Smart boards — also called interactive whiteboards or e-boards — improve the learning experience while making teachers’ lives better. They allow teachers and students to learn collaboratively, share files, access online resources and use educational software.

Here are five of the top uses of smart boards in teaching and learning, and how they can benefit every student.

1. Boost student engagement

Today’s K-12 students are digital natives, and researchers say they learn better because of it.

One study found that smart boards improve good teaching and increase clarity among teachers and students. With smart boards, like Samsung Interactive Displays, teachers can create more dynamic lessons by writing or typing on screen, calling attention to certain topics with highlights, circles, arrows or zooming in, and sharing multimedia content such as videos, webpages, presentations and images. The smart board can even be divided into multiple sections so more than one student can work on it at once. In fact, using Split Screen Mode, teachers and students can see two windows at once.

2. Accommodate different learning styles

Whether a child is a visual learner, an auditory learner or a kinesthetic (hands-on) learner, an interactive whiteboard can benefit them. Visual learners can view the 4K UHD screen — such as the one on Samsung Interactive Displays — while auditory learners can listen to multimedia content, and hands-on learners can write on the board with a stylus, or even their finger. Educators can use the smart board for teaching small groups, organized by learning style, or one on one with individual students. Plus, since Samsung Interactive Displays support powerful screen sharing, teachers and students can participate using smart wireless sharing from multiple devices.

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3. Save, share and send lessons

When students are out sick, K-12 teachers typically spend time creating work packets for them to catch up. With a smart board, this process is easier since teachers can screenshot their lessons and instantly save and share them with students and colleagues as needed. Or, they can record the entire lesson with the recording feature. The content options are limitless: Teachers can save their notes so they can pick up where they left off, or they can create review materials for students to bring home to study. This is especially beneficial for students who are trailing their peers, as they no longer have to take notes in real time while struggling to keep pace with the lesson. If they miss something, they can easily refer back to it on their own time.

At the beginning of the day, smart board startup is easy — just turn it on, and go. And at the end of the day, teachers can turn off the board without needing to erase anything or take physical notes on what they covered.

4. Make the classroom work for everyone

Sometimes, there’s a need for remote learning. Smart boards make it easier for teachers to include remote students via videoconference technology. There’s no need to set up any special cameras. Students at home can see everything the teacher is doing and interact with their peers, too. This not only enables hybrid learning but encourages it. You can also benefit by using intelligent apps for class, such as Boxlight’s MimioConnect educational software specifically designed to help students meet their educational goals.

5. Help students succeed

A study in the Universal Journal of Educational Research proved that students who learned via an interactive whiteboard did significantly better on standardized tests than those who did not use the technology. The same study points out that permanence in learning is increased through visual materials, paintings, symbols and screen designs. Another study linked achievement on the Ohio Achievement Reading Tests to the use of interactive whiteboards, across all grade levels. And since the newest Samsung Interactive Displays feature Android 11 OS, it’s easier and more comfortable for teachers to unlock unlimited learning potential via a familiar user experience.

Given all the ways interactive smart boards enhance the learning experience, school districts that invest in smart boards are investing in their students.

You can find the right classroom display for your students’ needs — and for your budget — by exploring Samsung’s full lineup of versatile interactive displays. And discover how simple, scalable and secure display solutions can empower educators to take control of the curriculum in this free guide.

Trump Tweets His Support For Permanently Funding A Beloved Conservation Program

This story originally featured on Outdoor Life.

President Donald Trump has evidently undergone an election-year conversion on the topic of the Land & Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), pumping new energy into the campaign for full and permanent funding of this critically important access and habitat conservation tool.

This week, Trump used his favorite platform—Twitter—to express his enthusiasm for LWCF. He wrote: “I am calling on Congress to send me a Bill that will fully and permanently fund the LWCF and restores our National Parks. When I sign it into law, it will be HISTORIC for our beautiful public lands.”

He goes on to thank Sens. Cory Gardner and Steve Daines, whom he called “GREAT Conservative Leaders.”

In this highly partisan era, LWCF is one of the relatively few government programs that consistently receives support on both sides of the aisle. Even so, it has critics among those who frown upon the idea of government owning land in the first place. Full funding for the LWCF has received pushback because some lawmakers argue the massive $12 billion backlog in national parks maintenance needed to be addressed first.

It seems the president and the Senate are ready to tackle both issues with one deal. This week, Senate leaders announced a bipartisan deal that would spend about $2.2 billion per year on conservation and outdoor projects and national park maintenance across the country, according to the New York Times.

Of that $2.2 billion, $900 million would go to the LWCF, which is nearly double the $485 million Congress approved this year and 60 times larger than the $15 million Trump proposed in his 2023 budget last month. More than a $1 billion per year would be used to address the national parks maintenance backlog.

Trump’s change of heart has surprised conservation policy observers on two levels. For one, LWCF has hardly been front-page news lately, given the election, coronavirus outbreak, and the ups and downs on Wall Street.

Secondly, Trump has been mostly negligent of the LWCF in the past. In fact, his previous budgets have effectively zeroed out LWCF funding.

Frequent readers of this site know that LWCF is one of the most powerful funding mechanisms for conservation that Congress has. Since 1965, LWCF has taken some money from royalties paid for off-shore energy development and directs it towards habitat conservation, access projects and urban parks and recreation.

LWCF can be funded up to $900 million annually, but Congress often raids that piggy bank for other purposes. Over the decades, Congress has funded LWCF at about half its potential. Right now, Congress is considering legislation to fully and permanently fund LWCF at the $900 million level. That bill passed the House of Representatives, is being considered in the Senate, and evidently has the support of the White House.

It’s probably no coincidence that Trump’s tweet heaped praise on Daines and Gardner. Both are Trump allies who are up for re-election in November and both represent states that highly value hunting, fishing, and the outdoors. Gardner is said to be one of the most vulnerable Republican senators facing the voters this cycle. Some outlets, including Politico and The New York Times, say Daines may see a surprise challenge from Montana Governor Steve Bullock, a Democrat who has branded himself as a champion of public lands.

No matter the motivation, LWCF stock is going up in Washington D.C., and odds have to be increasing that legislation to provide full and permanent funding will actually pass into law.

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