July 6th 2016
An App a Day: Vine
February 1st 2013
Images: Official Apple Store
A social network within a social network? Judy Johnson introduces Twitter's latest video project that's already on a roll
It's official: we've moved on from words, and we've even moved on from images. No longer will a 2D picture of a cat satisfy our social needs, nor will a photo of your carefully prepared and retro-filtered dinner do. Now, it's all about videos.
In case you missed the flurry of excitement from social media addicts last weekend, Twitter has launched its very own micro video app - think Instagram but for video - called Vine. And it’s already taking over the world (wide web).
Available only on iPhone or the iPod Touch (for now), Vine allows you to film and share six second video snapshots of whatever you're doing on the move, be it making a cup of tea or testing out your latest lipstick.
Yes, most phones already have video capability that can be shared via social networks - but what's different about this hot new app is the utter simplicity of it all. The interface is incredibly intuitive, and all you have to do to create your video is point your phone at your subject and hold your finger on the screen to film; even technophobes will have no trouble with this one.
Even better, as well as filming a full six second video, you can split it up by taking a few separate shots that then join to make one video, which can resemble stop motion animation - great fun for creative types who want to experiment. All videos then loop so you don't have to go to that enormous effort of hitting a 'play' button. This is essentially video for the lazy generation.
We've got to hand it to Twitter for timing - not only is this the perfect next social step in this GIF-loving online culture of ours, but with London Fashion Week around the corner we're certain blogs and Twitter are about to take on a whole new lease of life thanks to the instant capture of live events being so much easier.
Naturally, though, social networking butterflies have already rushed to experiment with their new toy and as a result there are suddenly a lot of six-second clips of cats, puppies and food cropping up left, right and centre. It’s not that we don’t like to see which cake you’re tucking into, but we’re just not sure we need to watch it sit still on your plate for six whole seconds. If anything, you’re wasting valuable tasting time.
The app is not without its downsides, either; it's hard to tell what your username is, since the profile section is so basic; when we initially thought we'd set it up wrong we couldn't even work out how to delete the account (thankfully, we’d got it right - and we’re pretty sure we’re just called GetTheGloss). There's room for expansion though, and that's what's so thrilling - we're imagining Instagram-esque filters, the ability to share to Tumblr or upload to YouTube, and to be able to re-post content rather than simply liking it or commenting so that it becomes even more social.
Quick to leap on the opportunity, VinePeek.com has popped up already; a site which loops the latest uploads to Vine from users all over the world. Great for procrastinating, yes - but beware the inevitable porn posts which crop up every now and then. Don't worry though, within six seconds you'll be on to the next one, and will probably never get any work done ever again...
Vine is free and available from iTunes here.