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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Yahoo, Facebook and Microsoft

For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – April 19, 2016 – announces the list of stocks featured in the Analyst Blog. Every day the Zacks Equity Research analysts discuss the latest news and events impacting stocks and the financial markets. Stocks recently featured in the blog include Yahoo (YHOO), Facebook (FB) and Microsoft (MSFT).

Today, Zacks is promoting its ''Buy'' stock recommendations. Get #1Stock of the Day pick for free.

Here are highlights from Monday’s Analyst Blog:

Tech Stock Roundup: Facebook with Much to Say at F8

With the Yahoo (YHOO) bids expected to start coming in this morning and the earnings season also upon us, not many investors will be thinking about other things. There were however some important events last week, most notably Facebook’s (FB) F8 conference, which is what we’ll start off with today.

Facebook F8

Facebook’s F8 announcements were interesting, if not totally surprising. The company may be into social networking, but it’s not leaving any stone unturned to help people connect and communicate any way they can.

Facebook’s long-term plan with AI is ambitious: it might help the blind to see, the deaf to hear and so forth. But more immediate benefits are expected to be related to translation and image recognition. So it would easily translate a script in another language for your easy reading or quickly find a photograph you are looking for. Most interesting is the image segmentation that will allow it to describe the picture to a blond person. Microsoft (MSFT) is also working on technology to “help the blind to see.”

Facebook also announced that it was opening its hugely popular Messenger to chatbot development. Facebook didn’t sound like it was in a tearing rush either: the chatbots, which are basically a form of artificial intelligence with the ability to speak or text will be a way for businesses to interact with their customers on Messenger. But monetization is still not a priority for the company, so there’s time to come up with something good. Just as well given Microsoft’s recent escapade with the infamous Tay.

Its current VR efforts are focused on a hand held controller, which is “going to add a whole new layer of immersion.” Facebook also announced its own pro-grade 360-degree video camera that includes 17 cameras and costs $30K. The camera literally weaves together all the images captured for a 360-degree picture.

App developers are also being offered an Account Kit that will help apps recognize a user through email or phone number thus eliminating the need for passwords. The Free Basics simulator will help developers working with it and the all-new Demographic Insights from Facebook will provide demographic information so developers can modify content accordingly.

There were two bits of news for publishers: the first being the expansion of Instant Articles to all publishers anywhere in the world and the second, a new tool called Rights Manager, so publishers can manage, protect control and regulate videos on Facebook.

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YAHOO! INC (YHOO): Free Stock Analysis Report
FACEBOOK INC-A (FB): Free Stock Analysis Report
MICROSOFT CORP (MSFT): Free Stock Analysis Report
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