Watch out Twitter. Facebook aims to clip your Vine. Facebook on Thursday made a highly anticipated move with its Instagram property -- adding a video component to the digital photo mix.
Competing with Twitter's established Vine video micro-blogging service, Instagram has ingrained itself into the social media matrix with still photos and cool filters that let you add your own creative flare. Indeed, Instagram has built a strong community of folks who engage in ThrowBackThursdays and other hashtag-marked captions that drive user engagement.
Now Instagram is bringing all that to video with Video on Instagram. The company is positioning it as another way to share your stories. It lets you add more life to your special moments with moving pictures in living color.
13 Cool Filters
"When you go to take a photo on Instagram, you'll now see a movie camera icon," said Kevin Systrom, co-founder of Instagram. "Tap it to enter video mode, where you can take up to 15 seconds of video through the Instagram camera."
Vine, by comparison, only offers six seconds, which can feel a little cramped. Instagram also differentiates itself from its popular competitor by offering 13 filters created specifically for video.
"When you post a video, you'll also be able to select your favorite scene from what you've recorded as your cover image so your videos are beautiful even when they're not playing," Systrom said, such as videos from the local cafe showing your latte art, or an Instagramer on the other side of the world taking you on a tour of their city, or a mother sharing her joys in parenting.
"So what does this mean for your content? Nothing's different from photos. We're still committed to making sure you have control over all of your content," Systrom said. "Only the people who you let see your photos will be able to see your videos. And as with photos, you own your videos. You can learn more about Video on Instagram -- including our new Cinema feature -- by visiting the Instagram Help Center."
Will Pinterest Follow?
Greg Sterling, principal analyst at Sterling Market Intelligence, told us the Instagram move is "very significant" given the company's 130-million user base.
"The fact that it will allow 15-second video -- two times as long as Vine -- will make it appealing to people as well. The editing tools are also impressive," Sterling said. "It should be a significant new product and part of the user experience for Instagram. Brands will adopt it immediately as well. It may force a similar move over at Pinterest."