Twitter goes edge-to-edge, Facebook x Ray-Ban launches, end of green and amber lists?

By Jessica L on 10 September 2021

Twitter media goes full-screen

Twitter is testing edge-to-edge media that will more closely resemble Instagram’s feed. The company hopes to shift users’ largely text-based conversations towards a more visually immersive experience. In the works is also a new range of shopping tools which will enable product purchases on the platform.

Facebook x Ray-Ban hits the market

Facebook has partnered with Ray-Ban for its first foray into casual wearable tech. The features are modest: camera, microphone and speakers, no AR. Design-wise, the sunglasses are barely distinguishable from normal models – both a good thing and a somewhat sinister thing, depending on your take.

Traffic light system could be scrapped

There is speculation that the controversial traffic light system could be overhauled next month with the removal of green and amber categories. Travel industry leaders have been pressuring the government to do more to support the return of overseas holidays and boost consumer confidence. Another sticking point is the cost and necessity of PCR tests for fully vaccinated travellers. Tour operator On the Beach has announced it will cover the cost of testing for its customers, after research showed it was a significant barrier to booking travel. 

Hotel bed linen in short supply

The Financial Times reports that bed linen shortages and low staffing are forcing UK hotels to strip back services. The ongoing supply chain challenges mean that check-ins are being delayed and housekeeping is less frequent. Other laundered items such as towels, tablecloths and napkins are also being held up by delivery issues. On the plus side, it's an opportunity to nudge guests towards environmentally conscious practices.

London super boutique hotel opens

After seven years – and far north of £300 million investment – the world’s first “super boutique hotel” has opened in Leicester Square. With interiors by celebrated duo Yabu Pushelberg, The Londoner has ambitions to balance scale (350 rooms, 16 storeys and a mega-basement 30 metres below ground) with pioneering sustainability practices. Facilities include a rooftop bar, restaurants, spa, screening room and residents-only club. 

Americans want hotel vaccine mandates

A recent poll has shown that most Americans would like to see vaccine mandates in place for plane travel, hotel stays, dining and attending large events. More than six in 10 US citizens (61%) support proof of full vaccination as a requirement for flying – up from 57% in April 2021. Over half (53%) believe hotel stays should be limited to the fully vaccinated, though the travel industry is currently not indicating a move in this direction.

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