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Congrats to Instagram on Its New Bloatware

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Like a dyed-in-the-wool narcissist, Facebook absolutely can’t stand the idea anyone would care about another company—hence its propensity to buy up or rip off anything that so much as threatens to peel away a fraction of its users’ attention. Anyway, here’s Reels, something no one asked for.

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TikTok. You’ve heard of it, probably because there’s a teen in your life, or you’ve been trying to follow the incoherent shrieking of the president in recent weeks. Reels is Team Zuck’s answer to TikTok, and just like Lasso (its TikTok clone built inside of Facebook proper) it will inevitably fail and be shuttered, or end up another useless bit of bloat, like IGTV or the literally dozens of pointless widgets cluttering Facebook’s homepage.

Instagram is:

  • a beloved product
  • which makes an ungodly amount of money
  • and is decidedly not TikTok

It boggles the mind as to why Facebook can’t let those first two factors speak for themselves.

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Instagram Stories is the obvious exception here: Facebook stole Snapchat’s crown jewel wholesale, and it’s now a nearly essential function of the product. However, the Story format (and, I guess, the accompanying AR filters) was pretty much all Snapchat had, and so copying it was trivial for a team as large and well funded as Facebook. TikTok (which went through plenty of trial and error as Musical.ly before truly hitting its stride in its current form) is feature-rich in ways that Reels simply is not, and can’t easily replicate.

The deep bench of music publisher deals that allowed Musical.ly, and now TikTok, to not only give creators a soundtrack but to let publishers use the platform as a subtle distribution arm? MIA. The ability to remix other creators’ content in a collaborative (or mocking) way—what in TikTok parlance is called a duet? Not available.

They also fulfill wildly different use cases. Yes, there are Instagram meme accounts. Are there TikTok users who sort of just vlog a more-polished version of their mundane lives? Probably—I haven’t looked into it because that’s boring to watch (this coming from someone who voluntarily watches hourlong videos on furniture restoration on YouTube.) They do different things and that’s OK. The single worst mistake every big tech company makes at some point is caving to the urge to be everything to everyone. Exponential growth isn’t the only measure of success.

Facebook is more or less building a crappier clone of Vine inside a profitable product no one uses for that purpose, when the unbuzzy sequel to Vine is already proof positive that such a concept has been eclipsed by a more robust alternative. Will they let it die as easily as Lasso? A measured, global rollout and the very real possibility Microsoft or the U.S. government could tank TikTok domestically suggest no. But that’s also no guarantee anyone here wants or will ever find a use for Reels.

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Charge Your Phone Wirelessly With 50% off a Multifunctional LED Lamp

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Best Tech DealsBest Tech DealsThe best tech deals from around the web, updated daily.

White Wireless Charge Lamp | $18 | Amazon | Clip coupon + code ABC88699
Black Wireless Charger Lamp | $20 | Amazon | Promo code ABC88699

When you’re ready to turn in for the night, you don’t want to forget to charge your phone— especially if your mobile device doubles as your alarm clock.

With this wireless charger lamp, you can make this crucial step of your nightly routine even easier by just setting your phone on the wireless charging pad and… well, that’s all there is to it!

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Other functions include multiple lighting modes as well as a sleep timer option for auto shut-off of the light after 30 or 60 minutes.

This lamp can be yours in white for $18 if you clip the coupon on Amazon (it’s below the original $40 price) and add promo code ABC88699 at checkout.

You can snag the black version for $20 using the same code—no coupon though, sorry.

Don’t sleep on this deal! Who knows how long stock or the coupon code will last?

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Keep That Hotdish Hot With 65% Off a Luncia Casserole Carrier, Only $11 With Promo Code

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Best Home DealsBest Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.

Luncia Double-Decker Dish Carrier | $11 | Amazon | Promo code SDDU9S7F

It has been a long time since the days we could safely have a potluck or other gatherings, but we have a fantastic deal perfect for once those times return. These double-decker Luncia dish carriers can be had for 65% off when you add promo code SDDU9S7F at checkout and clip the coupon on the site (it’s just below the price). These holders fit 9″x 13″ sized baking dishes.

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That means you can insulate and keep two dishes of food warm for only $11 instead of $30. What’s more, your Luncia carrier will arrive by Christmas if you order today as a Prime member.

Just add promo code SDDU9S7F and clip the 5% off coupon to bring the price down to $11 for the blue or the grey option.

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Grab this offer while it’s still around!


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Conquer Your Pup’s Dander and Fur With $700 Off a Cobalt or Charcoal Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum

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Best Home DealsBest Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Cobalt) | $200 | Best Buy

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Charcoal) | $200 | Best Buy

Allergies can be bad enough as the seasons change. Don’t let pet hair and dander add to that by vacuuming it up early and often. That chore is easier said than done— unless you have a robot vacuum to do the work for you. This lovely bright cobalt Bobsweep PetHair Plus robot vacuum and mop, only $200 today at Best Buy seems like an ideal option. That’s a whopping $700 off, by the way.

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You can get the same deal for the charcoal version of the robot vac, too. This model is not only specially made for picking up pet hair, it self docks and charges when it’s finished with the work.

It also comes with a mop attachment, so it can take care of those kitchen floors for you as well. Grab it while it’s still available for this fantastic price!

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