The Significance of a Healthcare Advocate & How to Select One

Life is unpredictable, and there may come a time when you find yourself unable to make medical decisions on your own. Whether it’s due to ageing, the risk of stroke, cognitive impairment, or an accident, having someone you trust to speak on your behalf becomes crucial. This individual is often referred to as your healthcare advocate, agent, or proxy.

While appointing a healthcare advocate may seem like a minor detail in your estate plan, it holds immense significance for your future well-being.

It’s important to recognize that advocating for someone’s rights within the healthcare system requires effort and determination. The system often operates with the assumption that those in control, aside from the patient, hold the ultimate authority in decision-making.

Many people feel intimidated by doctors and the complex medical system, making it challenging to stand up for themselves when faced with difficult situations.

Therefore, it is crucial to carefully choose your healthcare advocate when creating or reviewing your estate plan.

So, what should you consider when appointing your own healthcare advocate?

First and foremost, it’s wise to select someone younger than yourself. While no one likes to think about getting older and losing independence, it’s a risk we all face.

Appointing a friend or partner who is around the same age as you might lead to complications if both of you experience impairments simultaneously. Ageing is unpredictable, and it’s essential to plan for such uncertainties.

Secondly, choose an advocate who is not afraid to ask questions and can make decisive decisions. Your healthcare advocate has the right to say “no” to anything that goes against your wishes.

Thirdly, opt for someone who is a good listener and respects your desires. Your appointed advocate should be willing to listen to your preferences regarding your healthcare if you become unable to communicate.

It’s crucial for both you and your advocate to have a clear understanding of when and what to advocate for on your behalf.

This can be an emotional process, especially towards the end of life when the need for advocacy is most crucial.

Your Responsibility

Preparing your healthcare advocate is your responsibility. You need to ensure that your chosen individual understands your wishes.

These conversations may be difficult, as they force us to acknowledge the possibility of becoming incapacitated and unable to communicate our desires.

However, it’s essential to make your wants known and document them in detail in your healthcare directive.

The American Bar Association offers a free downloadable Toolkit for Health Care Advance Planning that can assist you in this process.

It includes a quiz for your appointed advocate, allowing you to gauge their understanding of your wishes. Personally, I gave this quiz to both of my adult children, and it helped us clarify a few ambiguous points.

Created by the ABA Commission on Law and Aging, we believe it’s a valuable resource to have.

Final Takeaway

In conclusion, having a healthcare advocate is of utmost importance for everyone. Life is unpredictable, and anyone can find themselves in a situation where they require advocacy.

By carefully selecting and preparing your healthcare advocate, you can confirm that your wishes are respected and that you receive the care you desire, even when you cannot express it yourself.

The AI Revolution: Transforming Financial Services for the 2030s & Beyond

Let’s delve into how the continuous improvement of generative AI will reshape financial services well into the 2030s and beyond. In the long run, AI’s transformative power is influenced by two crucial factors: the shifting demographics and their impact on consumer preferences, as well as the rate at which AI technology advances.

Demographic changes and the imminent wealth transfer will drive the adoption of AI in financial services. Presently, Baby Boomers, who generally value in-person interactions and are less tech-savvy, hold a significant portion of the world’s wealth.

However, this scenario is expected to change over time. In the United States, for instance, $84 trillion of wealth is projected to be transferred from older Americans to millennials and Gen X heirs by 2045, with $16 trillion transferred by 2033.

While it’s hard to envision retired or soon-to-retire Baby Boomers abruptly abandoning their financial advisors and insurance agents in favour of AI-driven services, younger generations are far more adept with technology.

By the 2030s, tech-savvy millennials will be in their prime earning years, aged between 40 and 50. Although it’s difficult to predict the precise proportion of Gen X and Millennial consumers willing to embrace AI-driven services in the future, even if just a third of them adopt it, it would dramatically transform the financial services landscape.

This demographic shift will coincide with a transformation in the way financial services websites and mobile apps (or even headsets!) operate.

A Future Where Ai Responds to Customer Queries

Picture a future where customers simply describe their needs or queries, and an AI assistant promptly responds, 24/7, 365 days a year, within their bank or brokerage accounts.

The average consumer will only interact with human experts for specific and uncommon financial circumstances, such as managing a substantial inheritance or utilizing a 529 plan to cover college expenses.

AI will offer services to the average consumer at a much lower cost compared to human experts.
The convergence of demographic changes and advancing AI technology will reduce the need for many traditional financial services jobs.

Wealthy individuals with more complex tax and estate planning requirements may still retain human, financial experts and rely less on AI, but they represent only a small segment of the market.

According to venture capitalist Nikita Arora from Dig Ventures, the long-term demographic shift and improving AI technology will initiate a new “race to zero” cycle, resulting in reduced fees. This downward pressure on fees will likely lead to further consolidation among established financial behemoths. We may also witness the emergence of firms currently considered “challenger banks” as major players driven by superior AI technology.

Regardless of which firms ultimately emerge as winners, it is inevitable that AI will replace many jobs and tasks currently performed by humans.

The Progress of Ai

Unsurprisingly, the speed at which AI will improve and the appearance of generative AIs in the 2030s are topics of intense debate.

In March, tech luminaries like Elon Musk attracted attention by publishing an open letter calling for a pause in AI development due to concerns about the rapid advancement of AI technology.

However, some have criticized this letter and similar alarmist headlines. It is possible that generative AI technology will encounter a metaphorical “wall” at some point, resulting in slower progress.

Let’s recall the predictions made in the 2010s about self-driving cars, which rely on machine learning. Many believed that by 2020, self-driving cars would dominate the roads.

Elon Musk himself predicted in 2015 that Tesla cars would be fully autonomous by 2018. While self-driving technology has indeed made significant strides, it still cannot handle unusual and complex situations with complete reliability.

Self-driving cars will undoubtedly become a reality someday, but many early predictions about self-driving AI technology turned out to be overly optimistic and ultimately inaccurate.

However, even if progress in generative AI is slower than expected, the day will come when AIs are advanced and reliable enough to take the lead in providing financial services to the average customer.

Ai In Financial Services Firms

It’s not a question of “if” but rather “when.” This inevitability poses a long-term challenge for many financial services firms, necessitating an honest evaluation of their workforce structure.

The workforce of the future in the financial services industry will be smaller and more specialized. Currently, major financial services firms typically follow a business model that involves training a large number of client-facing staff to serve as a combination of salespeople and individuals with a solid understanding of finance.

This setup enables them to guide customers through a relatively standardized experience based on corporate guidelines.

However, in order to remain competitive with AI-driven services in the future, firms must adapt their business models.

The industry will need to transition to a smaller workforce where each client-facing professional receives extensive and costly training to develop specialized expertise that adds value.

The future workforce will focus on skill sets such as advanced tax planning and estate planning. Employees of the future will be there to assist customers with tasks that consumers are unlikely to feel comfortable handling on their own with an AI.

Bringing New Job Opportunities

The rise of AI will also bring about new job opportunities. According to Jeroen de Bel, Director of digital banking consultancy Fincog, “AI will create jobs in the industry that we can’t even envision today. For example, due to AI’s inherent limitations, the future financial services industry will require employees who specialize in monitoring and refining the technology.”

The financial services industry in the 2030s will bear little resemblance to what we see today. The winners will be the firms that can navigate the challenging transition to an advanced AI-driven customer experience and develop a more focused and agile workforce.

Final Thoughts

As we peer into the horizon of the 2030s, the financial services industry stands on the cusp of a remarkable transformation.
It is tough to say for sure what the future of AI holds for financial firms. However, those firms that successfully navigate the challenges posed by AI while embracing its benefits will emerge as the winners.

Secure Your Financial Future: Common Investment Mistakes to Avoid

Investing may seem like a lucrative way to grow your wealth. Still, it’s essential to avoid common mistakes that can lead to significant financial losses. Whether you’re a novice or an experienced investor, making informed decisions is crucial.

Let’s explore three common investing mistakes and learn how to avoid them to protect your hard-earned money.

Mistake 1: Basing Investing Decisions on Interest Rates Instead of Actual Dollars

One prevalent trap investors fall into is prioritizing investments over paying off debt based on interest rates alone. Financial advisors often highlight the potential for higher returns on investments like stocks compared to low-interest debt.

At first glance, it may seem like a straightforward decision to compare interest rates and invest instead of paying off debt. However, when you delve into the actual dollar amounts, you might discover that you’re losing more money than you anticipated.

Consider the example of millennials carrying student loans well into middle age or even retirement. A significant number of borrowers aged 35 to 49 owe more than $100,000.

Instead of being burdened with debt for an extended period, taking proactive steps to pay off debt can lead to financial freedom.

Take the time to understand the true cost of debt by using loan interest calculators. Seeing how interest accrues daily may surprise you, potentially eroding your investment returns.

As a beginner investor with limited funds, it’s unlikely that you’ll find investment options generating enough interest or appreciation to outweigh your student loan interest.

While it may feel tempting to jump into investing, remember that paying off debt first can save you from accumulating additional interest expenses and provide a solid foundation for future investments.


Mistake 2: Underestimating the Power of Paying Off Debt Before Increasing Investments


The fear of missing out often pushes investors to prioritize investments over paying off debt. However, channelling your efforts towards becoming debt-free can lead to better long-term financial outcomes.

Paying off debt requires discipline and may involve making certain sacrifices. This could mean downsizing from two cars to one, forgoing vacations, living off a single income instead of two, and carefully budgeting daily expenses.

While some may perceive these measures as overly frugal, they can significantly accelerate your debt payoff journey.


Consider my experience of paying off $72,000 in student loans within one year instead of the initially planned two. This achievement allowed me to explore other options and prioritize investments without the burden of debt.

By maximizing your efforts to eliminate debt, you gain financial flexibility and can redirect those funds towards investments.

In the long run, being debt-free positions you to make more substantial contributions to retirement plans, increase your savings, and achieve financial independence earlier.


Mistake 3: Withdrawing from Retirement Accounts Too Early


A common misstep, particularly during times of financial strain, is prematurely withdrawing funds from retirement accounts.

While hardship withdrawals may be necessary for emergencies like medical expenses or eviction, withdrawing for non-essential purchases can severely impact your future financial well-being.

Many individuals have mistakenly perceived their retirement accounts as mere black holes for money. In their twenties, they regretfully withdrew tens of thousands of dollars from their retirement savings to invest in property.

However, they later realized this decision was driven by short-term gratification rather than long-term patience and prudent investment choices.

Even with the tax bill and the 10% early withdrawal penalty, it became evident that following general trends and generic advice didn’t align with their financial goals.

Instead, we recommend viewing retirement accounts as vehicles for honouring your future self. By reframing your purpose, you can resist the temptation of using those funds for discretionary purchases that can be saved separately.

Commit to understanding the principles of financial independence and calculate your retirement goals to determine the necessary investments.

Maximize your contributions to retirement accounts within the limits set by the IRS. In times of cash flow issues, consider pausing contributions temporarily rather than withdrawing funds. By embracing tax-advantaged accounts, you can save for your future self while enjoying tax benefits that regular brokerage accounts lack.

Final Thoughts

Ultimately, avoiding these common investing mistakes can protect your financial stability and pave the way for a secure future. Prioritize paying off debt, make informed investment decisions based on dollar amounts, and resist the urge to withdraw retirement funds prematurely.

By adopting a thoughtful and disciplined approach to investing, you can become a successful investor without overcomplicating your strategy. Remember, your financial future is worth it!

Need a Developer Assistant? Harness has Got You Covered!

If you’ve been longing for a way to boost your productivity and make your work life easier, you’re in luck! Harness, the continuous software delivery startup, has just unveiled its latest offering: the AI Development Assistant, lovingly known as AIDA.

This groundbreaking generative AI assistant is here to revolutionize the software development process and help you overcome those pesky challenges that often slow you down.

Harness has been on a mission for the past five years to create tools that make developers’ lives more efficient. And with AIDA, they’re taking it to a whole new level.

This AI assistant builds on the company’s extensive AI expertise, particularly in the areas of DevOps, CI/CD, deployment, and verification. AIDA aims to infuse generative AI into various stages of the software development lifecycle, making the entire process smoother and more productive.

What can AIDA do for you?

Now, let’s dive into what AIDA can do for you. It’s not just about generating code; this assistant has a wide range of features that can supercharge your productivity by 30% to 50%!

The software development lifecycle (SDLC) involves multiple phases, including code writing, building, testing, security assurance, deployment, and cost management.

Harness aims to infuse generative AI into each of these stages to increase productivity and efficiency. While AIDA is still a work in progress, it already encompasses three key elements.

Firstly, AIDA offers an automatic resolution of build and deployment failures. When developers make changes, it can impact multiple interconnected systems, such as AWS accounts, HashiCorp secrets managers, or Kubernetes clusters.

These changes can lead to failures, requiring developers to manually troubleshoot the causes. With AIDA, developers can simply ask for the cause and fix of the failure. They retain control over whether to implement the suggested fix, ensuring humans remain firmly in control of the process.

Secondly, AIDA identifies and fixes security vulnerabilities automatically after developer approval. This feature integrates with the Harness Security Testing Orchestration module. It is trained on known common vulnerabilities and exposures, as well as common weakness enumerations.

By automating vulnerability fixing, developers can streamline their workflows and reduce the risk of security breaches.

Lastly, AIDA assists in controlling cloud costs by using natural language processing to help identify potential savings. Developers can define policies for governing cloud assets and costs, automating what has traditionally been a complex and manual process. This feature simplifies the creation and maintenance of cost management policies, contributing to overall cost optimization.

With AIDA, you’re in control.

Now, it’s important to note that AIDA is not here to replace you. It’s an assistant designed to enhance your work process and make you more efficient.

You’re still in control, deciding whether to implement AIDA’s suggestions and fixes. After all, your expertise and decision-making are invaluable.

By bringing AI into every aspect of software development, they’re breaking down barriers and streamlining the entire lifecycle.

Experts in the field, like Constellation Research Inc. analyst Holger Mueller, are excited about this innovation.

They believe it’s a significant step in empowering developers and boosting productivity. The real test will be seeing the impact it has on developers and how it improves their day-to-day work.

Oh, and before WE forget, Harness has made sure to address your concerns about data privacy, security, and copyright infringement.

They’ve designed AIDA’s stack in a way that ensures all the source code used in training has permissive licenses.

So you can use AIDA with peace of mind, knowing that proprietary or copyleft code won’t be involved.

Wrapping Up!

Harness AIDA

In a nutshell, Harness’s AI Development Assistant (AIDA) is a game-changer for developers. It’s here to make your life easier, increase your efficiency, and tackle real-world challenges head-on.

With AIDA by your side, you can take your productivity to new heights while staying firmly in control of the development process. So, get ready to embrace the power.


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Swipe Right! But This Time To Make Friends Thanks to Bumble

Have you ever wished for a simpler way to make friends? Well, look no further because Bumble, the popular dating app, has got you covered. Bumble is expanding its services beyond dating and is now checking out the waters for friendship with its innovative app, Bumble for Friends.

This exciting development aims to connect individuals who are looking to expand their social circle and find like-minded companions.

Let’s explore the details and discover what Bumble’s new app is about!

Bumble For Friends or Simply Speaking “BFF”

Bumble For Friends is currently in the testing phase in select markets, including the UK. It is slated for a US release later this year. With this standalone app, Bumble aims to cater specifically to those who seek new friendships without the dating aspect.

The app’s description in the App Store highlights its commitment to fostering kindness and safety within a community of individuals looking to connect and build meaningful relationships.

While the app is free to use, Bumble For Friends also offers premium subscriptions that provide additional benefits. Users can choose from subscriptions lasting a week, three months, six months, or even a lifetime.

Moreover, the app includes in-app purchases such as boosts for enhanced profile visibility and super swipes to grab the attention of specific individuals.

Credit: Bumble

Tapping Into the Friend-Finding Market

According to a Bumble spokesperson, the BFF mode, which focuses on friend-finding, currently accounts for 15% of the main app’s monthly active users. Recognizing the demand for a dedicated platform to find friends, Bumble decided to develop a separate app to meet this need.

By doing so, Bumble hopes to tap into the friend-finding market, joining the ranks of other apps like Yubo, LMK, Wink, Swipr, and Vibe.

The availability of Bumble For Friends extends beyond the UK, reaching as far as Australia, New Zealand, and the Philippines. The app is accessible on both Android and iOS platforms, ensuring that users across different devices can connect and forge friendships seamlessly.

Bumble has even created a new landing page for the app. However, the download button currently directs users to the main app unless they are part of the testing group in the markets mentioned above.

Bumble’s expansion into the friend-finding arena represents a significant investment by the company. By acknowledging the importance of friendship in people’s lives, Bumble aims to provide a platform that helps individuals find their tribe.

Now Check Your Music Compatibility with Bumble

That’s not all. Recently, Bumble has been making strategic partnerships to enhance user experiences. One notable collaboration with Spotify allows users to showcase their favourite shows and artists on their profiles.

This integration adds another layer of personalization and conversation starters for users, fostering even deeper connections.

Looking at The Financial Prospects

Switching gears, let’s take a quick look at Bumble’s financial health. As of June 22, 2023, Bumble’s stock (BMBL) experienced some fluctuations in trading volume, with lower-than-average activity. However, despite this, the company’s market capitalization remained stable at $2.5 billion.

Bumble’s revenue growth saw a positive trajectory, with an 18.00% increase compared to the previous year. On the flip side, the net profit margin was negative at -8.83%.

Looking ahead, Bumble’s next reporting date is scheduled for August 9, 2023, with an EPS forecast of $0.04 for the quarter.

Analyzing Bumble’s Growth Potential

As an influential player in the technology services sector and the packaged software industry, Bumble continues to navigate the market with its unique offerings and expanding services.

The positive reception from analysts further adds to the company’s growth potential. Currently, 20 analysts have provided 12-month price forecasts for Bumble Inc, with a median target of $25.00.

This median estimate represents a substantial 42.86% increase from the current price of $17.50.

Investment analysts maintain a consensus to buy stock in Bumble Inc, a rating that has remained consistent since April.

Summing Up!


In short, Bumble’s foray into the friend-finding market with its Bumble For Friends app brings a fresh approach to making connections and expanding social circles. With its focus on kindness, safety, and community, Bumble aims to create a space where individuals can forge meaningful friendships.

Through strategic partnerships and continuous growth, Bumble Inc. proves to be an exciting player in both the social and financial landscapes.

So, why not give BFF a try and discover the joy of connecting with like-minded individuals on a whole new level?


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Google Empowers Online Shopping & Skin Care with AI

Google continues to push the boundaries of generative AI with innovative updates to its shopping and image recognition features. These advancements aim to enhance the online shopping experience and provide users with valuable information about their skin conditions.

Let’s delve into the details and explore how these technologies are revolutionizing the way we shop and care for our skin.

Virtual Try-On for Apparel

A groundbreaking virtual try-on tool for apparel has been introduced as part of the upcoming Google Shopping updates. Leveraging a diffusion-based model developed by Google, this tool predicts how clothes would look on real fashion models.

By simulating various poses, the AI model accurately captures how the clothing drapes, folds, stretches, and forms wrinkles and shadows.

Google trained the model using a vast dataset consisting of paired images. Each pair contained a person wearing a garment in two distinct poses. Additionally, to enhance the model’s robustness, random pairs of photos featuring different garments and people were used.

This comprehensive training approach ensures accurate representations of the clothing on diverse models.

Starting today, U.S. shoppers using Google Shopping can virtually try on women’s tops from popular brands like Anthropologie, Everlane, H&M, and LOFT.

To access this feature, simply look for the new “Try On” badge on Google Search. Men’s tops will also be available later this year.

Addressing Online Shopping Concerns

Lilian Rincon, senior director of consumer shopping products at Google, highlighted the importance of building shopper confidence. When trying on clothes in physical stores, we can immediately assess if they suit us.

However, a survey revealed that 42% of online shoppers do not feel represented by model images, and 59% express dissatisfaction when the received item looks different from their expectations.

To address these concerns, Google’s virtual try-on technology aims to lessen the gap between online and in-store shopping experiences. While Amazon, Adobe, and Walmart have also experimented with generative apparel modelling, Google emphasizes the use of real models to ensure diverse representation.

Models of various ethnicities, skin tones, body shapes, and hair types, ranging from sizes XXS-4XL, were chosen. However, concerns remain about the potential impact on traditional photo shoots and model opportunities.

AI-Assisted Clothing Search

Image Credit: Google

Coinciding with the virtual try-on rollout, Google introduces advanced filtering options powered by AI and visual matching algorithms. These filters, available within product listings on Google Shopping, enable users to narrow their searches based on colour, style, and pattern.

Similar to how store associates assist customers in physical stores, these filters provide an extra hand when shopping for clothes online.

They suggest and find alternative options based on the items users have already tried on, enhancing the personalized shopping experience.


Now Get a Skin Condition Diagnosis with Google Lens

Expanding the capabilities of Google Lens, the computer vision-powered app, Google now enables users to search for skin conditions similar to those they might observe on their own skin.

By uploading a picture or photo through Lens, the app initiates a search for visual matches. This feature proves valuable when individuals encounter skin issues like moles, rashes, or other conditions that are difficult to describe accurately in words.

While this feature falls short of the AI-driven app Google launched in 2021, which diagnosed skin, hair, and nail conditions, it provides users with crucial information for making informed decisions about seeking medical attention or opting for over-the-counter treatments.

Lens Integration with Bard and AI Advancements

Google Bard

As previously announced, Google Lens integrates with Bard, Google’s AI-powered chatbot experience. Users can now include images in their Bard prompts, and Lens works behind the scenes to assist Bard in understanding the images.

For example, when shown a photo of shoes and asked about their name, Bard, informed by Lens’ analysis, delivers an accurate response.

Google continues to invest in generative AI technologies to enhance Bard’s capabilities. Recent updates include Bard’s ability to write, execute, and test its own code, improving problem-solving skills, and partnering with Adobe to incorporate art generation into Bard.


How Google is Reshaping Shopping and Medical World with its Technologies?

Google’s latest advancements in generative AI are reshaping the online shopping landscape and providing valuable insights into skin care.

The virtual try-on feature empowers users to make confident fashion choices, while enhanced filtering options and the integration of Lens with Bard elevate the shopping and chatbot experiences.

Additionally, Lens’ ability to recognize skin conditions enables users to gather information and make informed decisions about their health. Google’s commitment to leveraging AI technologies underscores its dedication to enhancing user experiences and addressing evolving needs in the digital realm.

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Instagram Rolls Out New Features: Reach Global Audience & Download Reels

Instagram, one of the widely used social media platforms owned by Meta, has made two significant updates to enhance user experience and engagement.

The company has rolled out its Channels for broadcasting messages feature globally, allowing creators and users to broadcast messages to a wider audience.

Additionally, Instagram now enables users to download Reels, expanding the reach of these short videos beyond the app.

Now Reach Global Audience with Channels Feature

Instagram Channel Feature

Previously available to select creators and users, Instagram’s Channels feature is now accessible to a global audience.

Mark Zuckerberg made the announcement on his channel, recommending notable channels such as the International Cricket Council (ICC), director Karen X. Cheng, influencer Michael Le, and artist Daniel Arsham.

Initially launched in February, the Channels feature enables creators to share one-to-many messages with their fans. In May, Instagram introduced support for collaborators on Instagram Channels, allowing for engaging conversations between creators.

This move aimed to strengthen the connection between creators and their followers.

How to Use Channels Feature

To discover relevant channels to join, users can navigate to the Direct Messages (DM) section and explore the “Suggested channels” segment.

Instagram utilizes user interests, interactions with creators, and overall activity on the platform to generate these personalized recommendations.

Alternatively, users can directly search for broadcast channels within the DM section.

Question Prompts, Dedicated Channels & More Tools For Creators

Meta is currently testing additional features, including question prompts for followers and a dedicated channels tab in the inbox.

Additionally, more tools for creators are also being developed, such as the ability to set an expiration date and time for channels, adding moderators to assist with member management, and sharing links or previews to Stories.


Not Just Instagram Channels Feature is Also Available On Whatsapp

It’s worth noting that Meta has recently introduced the Channels feature on WhatsApp as well. However, the purpose of Channels on WhatsApp differs from Instagram’s implementation.

WhatsApp’s Channels primarily serve as a platform for local and global authorities and agencies to connect with people. Initially launched with select partners in Colombia and Singapore, this feature aims to foster communication between authorities and the public.

Now You Can Download Reels on Instagram Just Like TikTok

In another exciting update, Instagram now allows users to download Reels created by other users. This feature has been highly anticipated, as rival short video app TikTok has offered it for years.

TikTok’s success can be attributed, in part, to the ability to watch short videos with the app’s watermark outside the platform. Adam Mosseri, the head of Instagram, announced this update on his Instagram broadcast channel. U.S.-based users can now download Reels to their camera roll by simply tapping on the share icon and selecting the Download option.

It is important to note that only Reels from public accounts are eligible for download. Public account holders also have the option to disable the download feature if they prefer.

While Mosseri did not explicitly mention whether there would be a watermark on the downloaded Reels, an accompanying image suggests that the downloaded video will display an Instagram logo alongside the account name.

TikTok utilizes a similar format by applying a watermark to downloaded videos. Instagram has always allowed users to download their own Reels without a watermark directly from drafts.

This move by Instagram to allow Reels downloads may serve as a strategic tactic to attract users to engage more with content on the platform. In 2021, Instagram made the decision to stop promoting content with TikTok watermarks or any watermark on its videos.

Similarly, YouTube introduced a logo-based watermark on downloaded Shorts, their short video product, as a means to discourage cross-platform sharing.

By enabling Reels downloads, Instagram aims to facilitate wider distribution of its content, ultimately driving growth and revenue for Meta.

Final Thoughts

The introduction of the Channels feature to a global audience and the ability to download Reels mark a promising step for Instagram.

These updates enhance the platform’s versatility, enabling users to connect with their favourite creators more effectively while expanding the reach of engaging short videos.

As Instagram continues to evolve, users can look forward to even more features and improvements designed to enhance their social media experience.


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Netflix brings Black Mirror to Life. Also, Launching A Screen-Inspired Eatery  

Netflix continues to push the boundaries of entertainment with its recent endeavours. From launching satirical websites inspired by “Black Mirror” to venturing into the food industry with a pop-up restaurant, the streaming giant embraces creativity and innovation.

Curious to find out more? Continue reading this blog to discover the full story!

Enter the Fictional Streaming Universe of Netflix

After an episode of “Black Mirror” Season 6 humorously poked fun at Netflix itself, the streaming giant decided to join in on the joke. Netflix introduced two websites based on “Streamberry,” the fictional streaming service from the satirical anthology series Black Mirror.

Black Mirror

Black Mirror is a critically acclaimed and popular British science fiction television series created by Charlie Brooker.

It explores the dark and often dystopian aspects of modern technology and its impact on society. Each episode of “Black Mirror” presents a standalone story, delving into themes such as artificial intelligence, virtual reality, social media, privacy, and the consequences of technological advancements.

Streamberry is a fictional website just like Netflix that was featured in season 6 of the show. Netflix created an exact replica of the fictitious platform as a joke.

It features characters from the show, allowing users to immerse themselves in the “Streamberry” experience. Title cards showcasing familiar faces like pop star Ashley O (Miley Cyrus) and singing competition contestant Bing (Daniel Kaluuya) direct users to the corresponding Netflix episodes.

It’s a delightful nod to the fictional world within “Black Mirror” and an opportunity for fans to engage with the show in a unique way.

Additionally, Netflix launched, inviting users to become the stars of their own “Streamberry” show. By uploading their own photos, users can envision themselves as the subjects of the “Is Awful” universe. However, just like in the episode, users must carefully read the fine print.

The website humorously warns that submitted selfies may end up on billboards and asks for consent regarding the use of images for Netflix’s marketing campaign.

It’s a playful reference to the episode’s exploration of digital likeness rights and the surveillance-driven nature of the fictional streaming service.

Netflix Enters the Food Scene

Netflix’s ambitions extend beyond streaming and mobile gaming as the company boldly steps into the world of food service. The recent announcement of Netflix Bites, a pop-up restaurant, marks the streaming giant’s foray into the culinary realm.

The restaurant features renowned chefs from popular Netflix cooking series such as “Chef’s Table,” “Nailed It!,” and “Iron Chef: Quest for an Iron Legend.”

While Netflix has previously launched immersive experiences based on its shows, this is the first time the company ventures into the restaurant business.

Image Credit : Business Recorder

Netflix Bites invites patrons to savour dishes prepared by esteemed chefs like Curtis Stone, Dominique Crenn, Ming Tsai, Andrew Zimmern, Rodney Scott, Ann Kim, and pastry chef Jacques Torres.

The culinary lineup also includes Nadiya Hussain from “Nadiya Bakes” and mixologists from Netflix’s “Drink Masters.”

Launching on June 30, Netflix Bites will operate daily from 5-10 p.m. PT, with a brunch menu available on weekends from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

While specifics of the menu and pricing remain undisclosed, the tantalizing flavours promise to take diners on a delectable journey inspired by their favourite Netflix cooking shows.

To secure a reservation at Netflix Bites, interested individuals can visit or Resy. The reservation process entails a nonrefundable deposit of $25 per person, which will be applied toward the final bill.

Conveniently located near The Grove, where Netflix’s first pop-up retail store debuted in 2022, Netflix Bites adds another exciting chapter to the company’s experiential offerings.

The takeaway thought


Netflix’s recent expansions exemplify the company’s commitment to embracing creativity and pushing boundaries. Through the launch of websites inspired by “Black Mirror,” Netflix invites fans to engage with the fictional streaming universe in a playful manner.

By replicating the “Streamberry” experience and allowing users to become the stars of their own shows, the streaming giant taps into the allure of interactive storytelling.

Simultaneously, Netflix’s venture into the food service industry with Netflix Bites showcases the company’s determination to offer unique and immersive experiences. Collaborating with renowned chefs from beloved cooking series, the pop-up restaurant promises a gastronomic delight for diners seeking a taste of their favourite Netflix shows.

These innovative expansions solidify Netflix’s position as a leading entertainment provider, constantly evolving to cater to the diverse interests of its global audience.

As the streaming giant continues to surprise and captivate viewers, we eagerly anticipate what imaginative endeavours Netflix will embark upon next.

Spotify Gets A Revamp. Hi-Fi Music On the Horizon

Are you a Spotify enthusiast who loves exploring and organizing your music and podcasts? Exciting news awaits!

Spotify has unveiled a revamped desktop app, bringing you redesigned interfaces for “Your Library” and “Now Playing.”

The aim is to align the desktop experience with the convenience and functionality of the mobile app.
Not only this but Spotify is also introducing a hi-fi audio option.

Now, you can seamlessly browse, explore, and organize your libraries just like you do on your mobile device while jamming to hi-fi music every day!

A Streamlined Desktop Experience

Spotify is rolling out redesigned interfaces for “Your Library” and “Now Playing” on its desktop app, aligning them with the beloved mobile version. The primary objective is to provide users with a consistent and intuitive browsing experience across devices.

With the updated desktop app, you can effortlessly explore, browse, and organize your music and podcast libraries, just like you do on your mobile device. The new layout allows quick access to your saved music and podcast collections via the “Your Library” section on the left-hand side of the app.

Early tests have shown that this feature saves time and facilitates seamless transitions between playlists, making it easier than ever to enjoy your favourite content.

On the right-hand side of the app, you’ll find the “Now Playing” view, where you can view the current song or podcast you’re listening to. This interface also provides additional information about the track and artist, such as tour dates and merchandise, fostering deeper connections with your favourite artists.

Moreover, select podcasts offer the option to follow along with transcripts as you listen. These changes provide more context and quicker access to your personal favourites. Spotify plans to gradually roll out these enhancements to all desktop users worldwide, starting today.

Introducing Hi-Fi Audio for the Audiophiles

Spotify is set to launch a new hi-fi audio tier, catering to those who crave top-notch sound quality. The introduction of lossless music streaming through a premium subscription plan, tentatively called “Supremium,” has been long-awaited.

While the exact pricing is yet to be confirmed, it is expected to exceed the current premium plan’s cost of $9.99 per month.

This move comes as Spotify aims to bolster its revenue and appease investors who have been pushing for a price increase.

Initially, the hi-fi tier will be available in non-U.S. markets, offering subscribers access to audiobooks as well. If the launch proves successful, Spotify plans to expand the offering to the U.S. market in October.

The concept of a premium hi-fi subscription plan was first mentioned by a Reddit user last year. The proposed “Platinum tier” subscription, priced at $19.99 per month, included access to hi-fi music, a headphone tuner, limited-ad podcast listening, and additional features for playlist management and libraries.

Although delayed due to licensing issues, Spotify’s commitment to delivering innovation in music streaming has remained steadfast.

Apple Music Struggles to Keep Up

Competitors in the music streaming industry have also recognized the demand for high-quality audio.

Apple Music introduced support for lossless music without any additional cost, while Amazon upgraded its Amazon Prime Music subscription to include access to hi-fi music.

To stay competitive and meet the expectations of its users, Spotify is joining this trend by offering its own premium hi-fi audio option.

Spotify’s Ever-Growing User Base

During Spotify’s Q1 2023 earnings call, the company proudly announced that it has surpassed 500 million monthly active users, with over 210 million premium subscribers. With these new updates, Spotify aims to enhance the value it provides to its loyal customer base.

While the introduction of a costlier hi-fi plan may not dramatically increase the subscriber count, it is projected to boost the average revenue per user. This offering caters to individuals who are passionate about high-fidelity music and are willing to invest in a superior audio experience.

Spotify understands the importance of providing options that cater to diverse preferences within its vast user community.

To Summarize…

Spotify’s recent updates to its desktop app and the imminent launch of a hi-fi audio subscription plan showcase the company’s commitment to enhancing the user experience.

By aligning the desktop interface with its popular mobile app, Spotify streamlines browsing and organization for users across platforms.

Simultaneously, the introduction of a premium hi-fi tier allows audio enthusiasts to enjoy lossless music streaming, providing a top-tier experience to those seeking unparalleled sound quality.

These updates, coupled with Spotify’s impressive user growth, solidify the company’s position as a leader in the music streaming industry, promising an even more enjoyable and immersive musical journey for its dedicated listeners.

Price Hike vs Risk Mitigation – Examining the ROI of Cyber Insurance

As headlines continue to be dominated by major hacking scandals, the alarming truth is that cybercrime is rapidly increasing. With the widespread digitalization and significant advancements in network technology, our reliance on devices has reached unprecedented levels.

Unfortunately, this dependency has also provided criminals with an expanding array of endpoints to exploit. The situation has become dire, with hacking offences surging by over 100% in the year ending March 2022, as compared to the same period in 2020.

In the midst of this escalating threat landscape, individuals and organizations find themselves vulnerable to cyberattacks to cyberattacks on an unprecedented scale.

From high-profile data breaches affecting millions to ransomware attacks paralyzing critical infrastructure, the repercussions of such incidents are far-reaching and financially devastating.

The urgency to protect sensitive information and digital assets has never been more apparent.

But, What’s the Solution?

Amidst this backdrop, cyber insurance has emerged as a potential safeguard against the financial repercussions of a cyberattack. However, navigating the complex landscape of cyber insurance is no easy feat.

The rising tide of cybercrime has led to a corresponding increase in insurance premiums, leaving many individuals and businesses grappling with the question – Is the cost of cyber insurance truly worth it?

Here’s the Answer…

To answer this question, it becomes crucial to delve into the intricacies of cyber insurance policies, examining their coverage, exclusions, and limitations. Moreover, it is essential to evaluate the potential financial impact of a cyberattack and weigh it against the cost of insurance premiums.

With the stakes higher than ever, making an informed decision about cyber insurance is paramount to mitigating the risks posed by cybercrime.

In this blog, we will dissect the current cyber threat landscape, exploring notable hacking scandals and their widespread implications. We’ll delve into the factors contributing to the exponential rise in cybercrime and the vulnerabilities created by our digital dependency.

Join us as we navigate the turbulent waters of cybercrime and cyber insurance, seeking answers to the pressing questions – IS BEING CYBER INSURED WORTH THE RISING COST?

Who Qualifies for Cyber Insurance?

Obtaining insurance has become progressively more difficult in all areas. Not only are prices rising, but there are also stricter underwriting criteria and increased focus on risk management and the maturity of security programs.

Hence, businesses must demonstrate robust security measures to qualify for cyber insurance. Although the specific criteria for cyber insurance may differ based on industry, insurer, business size, and coverage need – there are certain universally required security measures that every business seeking insurance must implement.

  • Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR)

As the number of endpoints, such as laptops, mobile phones, and tablets, continues to increase, so do the potential entry points for cybercriminals.

EDR is an essential requirement for businesses seeking insurance, as it enables monitoring, discovery, investigation, and response to threats across the network of endpoint devices.

  • Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)

MFA has become a standard practice in daily business operations and is now a mandatory requirement for insurers. Implementing MFA for business networks, emails, and applications adds an extra layer of security.

  • Separate Backups

As cyber-attacks advance, relying on a single data backup is no longer sufficient. Insurers now require businesses to have multiple backups in different locations to mitigate the risk of data loss.

  • Cyber Awareness Training

Even the most robust cybersecurity measures can be undermined by human error. Insurers expect businesses to provide regular training and assessments to employees to enhance awareness and minimize the risk of social engineering attacks.

  • Penetration and Stress Testing

In addition to employee training, insurers also require evidence that a business’s cybersecurity tools can effectively withstand threats.

Sharing the results of penetration and stress tests can help alleviate concerns regarding the level of protection in place.

  • Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA)

Although not yet a universally adopted security measure, ZTNA is gaining popularity as a reliable choice for secure network access, replacing outdated VPNs.

While not all insurers may currently require ZTNA, it is likely to become a future requirement due to its enhanced security capabilities.

While implementing the aforementioned security measures can enhance the eligibility for cyber insurance, it’s important to note that specific requirements will vary depending on the individual case.

Moreover, apart from insurance criteria, certain industries have their own regulatory obligations, such as the Telecommunications (Security) Act (TSA) for Network Operators.

It is crucial for businesses to comply with government legislation, as insurance companies are unlikely to accept those that fail to meet these requirements.

By aligning with both insurance criteria and regulatory obligations, organizations can better protect themselves and improve their chances of securing insurance coverage.

Is Cyber Insurance Really Worth It?

Determining the value of cyber insurance is not a straightforward matter with a simple “yes” or “no” answer. It heavily depends on the specifics of the individual policy, necessitating a thorough examination of coverage details, contractual stipulations, limits, and premium costs.

One important factor to consider is that certain insurers may require selecting the investigating company in the event of a breach. While this may not appear significant initially, it becomes more problematic when coupled with recent exceptions related to state-sponsored attacks.

Insurance companies are granted the authority to determine whether a breach is linked to a nation-state, potentially impacting the eligibility of the claim.

Hence, a careful evaluation of the policy terms and conditions, including the potential implications of state-sponsored attack exemptions, is crucial in assessing the worth of cyber insurance.

Organizations must consider whether they are comfortable relying on an insurer’s investigation results when it comes to breach incidents, especially if they have their own means of investigation or existing partnerships with remediation companies.

This raises concerns about the value of cyber insurance. However, what is undoubtedly valuable is maintaining a high level of cyber security that eliminates doubts about insurance eligibility.

As the threat landscape expands, businesses should stay vigilant, adapt security measures accordingly, and safeguard themselves, their partners, and their customers. Even though insurance requirements should not be the sole basis for an organization’s security, the higher standards being set indicate that there is a need to reassess protection levels.

The Bottom Line

The decision to obtain cyber insurance ultimately depends on factors such as policy cost, coverage level, and specific stipulations or exemptions. However, regardless of insurance coverage, prioritizing cybersecurity requirements from both insurance companies and government regulations is crucial.

Adhering to security guidelines like cyber essential and cyber essentials plus can enhance your security posture, while regular testing of cyber defences helps identify areas that require improvement.

This not only increases eligibility for cyber insurance and potentially lowers premiums but also significantly reduces the likelihood of successful breaches.

Remember, Cybersecurity insurance provides a safety net for businesses in today’s digital landscape, offering financial protection and peace of mind against the rising threats of cyber-attacks. It acts as a crucial layer of defence, reinforcing a comprehensive cybersecurity strategy and mitigating potential financial losses.

So, don’t miss a minute anymore – get in touch with your cyber insurance company and secure your business today.


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