It has been a busy week in #TheLab with lots of meetings and consultations. We are making big changes to the website to suit a new host of standalone packages and to streamline our offering with a new framework we have been working on. It’s one of those exciting moments when a company has expanded quickly, grown in talent and channelled the unrelenting passion in what they do in all the right directions and we are now catching it all and presenting it in a way that unifies what we want for our clients with what they need in a easy to follow, transparent and powerful single strategy. We are excited about attending the Lincolnshire Digital Awards on Thursday as a chance to celebrate all we have done since the start of the year and congratulate the team for their efforts. It would be great to win but of course we are up against worthy opponents so we go into it with high hopes as well as great respect and admiration for all the businesses that have reached the finals.

On another note our CEO has mourned the death of one of his biggest idols and we were saddened in the office to hear of Prince’s death. We were only listening to his greatest hits on Thursday as the news was announced so just a solemn note to say he will be missed. His music has often filled the office and I am sure will continue to do so for many years to come – rest in peace, a true one of a kind talented performer.

Moving into industry news we have lots of areas to cover this week so let’s get started:

Bing Shopping Campaigns Are Now Out of Beta

Shopping Campaigns were launched in the US in July, following this Bing extended product ads to the UK and Australia, along with a beta test of shopping campaigns. It has recently been announced that Shopping Campaigns are fully rolled out in the UK.

Bing Shopping Campaigns are available in the UK, US, Australia, France and Germany. You can build Shopping Campaigns in Bing Ads or import them from AdWords.

Google Toolbar PageRank Removed

About a month ago Google informed us they would be removing the 1-10 PageRank scores from their toolbar and this past Friday they did just that. Google informed us they would be removing the PageRank scores from the Google Toolbars about a month ago. Google has done it, they have removed the data from the Toolbar and from any other tool that attempts to get the score. There has be reports of many people on the internet over this last weekend asking where their PageRank has gone, their PageRank still exists however the toolbar version of the rank has gone. Google has not updated the PageRank scores in their Google Toolbar for a very long time and has been trying to demote the importance of PageRank.

New Update to Podcasts on the Google App on Android

Google announced this week that users now have the ability to listen and subscribe to podcasts on Google Play music. You can now search for podcasts from the Google search bar, this will then display a podcast card that shows the three latest episodes including, information on the length and a description. If you choose to play a podcast episode you will be able to control it via a panel at the bottom of the screen and in the notification tab.

One of the key differences between podcasts in Play Music and in Google search is podcasts have to be submitted to Play Music in order to be indexed. However, Google search can play podcasts whether they have been submitted to Play Music or not.

Google are now showing additional search results for the local pack which will be based on the searcher’s location and history. This means that now when you make a local search query as well as it bringing up the “3 pack” or “local pack” Google might also offer you additional search filters depending on your query. The additional filters can include, “within 5 miles”, “open now” or “top rated”. Filters will all depend on the searcher, the query and their location. Below is an example of what your map may look like with the new filters. 22nd april

YouTube’s Live 360-Degree Video

The amazing technology of 360-degree videos, launched on YouTube in March 2015 has taken a new step. These videos were made so that users could click and drag on the video on a PC or simply rotate mobile devices, to view all 360-degrees of a video. This feature has now been made so that the videos can be streamed live. The 360-degree view is particularly impressive as it takes video one step further and makes you feel like you are truly there, you can move the screen around as you wish and view different angles as if you were there. This type of video has become popular amongst travellers showing of incredible scenery, and has even been shown to be remarkable simply being able to feel like you are sitting in on a conversation with the ability to look around.

For the new livestreaming aspect, YouTube is working with large companies such as VideoStitch, to ensure all of their applications can show the 360-degree streams. Whatever video it may be that you’re watching; you can feel even more in depth with the spatial audio feature. This will allow you to hear things differently depending on where you are looking; just as you would when you move around and turn to face different ways.