Instagram, one of the most popular photo sharing apps for smartphones, has released its newest update with a bit of a surprise; it now includes video. In addition to taking or adding pictures, the Facebook owned app now allows users to record up to fifteen second videos.
Video sharing apps have been quickly growing in popularity. The Twitter-owned Vine app, which was launched in January, was getting more shares on Twitter than Instagram pictures. Naturally, adding a record video option was the next step for Instagram. Much like Vine, users record a video simply by pressing down on the record icon and pause by removing their finger.
Unlike Vine, Instagram videos can be up to fifteen seconds long, as opposed to the six seconds Vine allows for. Videos on Instagram will also have the ability to add a filter to videos like users can with their photos. With 13 new video filters and a 'cinema mode' that prevents videos from looking shaky, this new update shows a drastic change for Instagram. It has led to speculation of the future of exclusively video sharing apps like Vine, which are limited by their single purpose functionality.
Instagram has a large user following already, and adding video may impede on the growth of apps that solely allow for video sharing. The new update gives users to create something more elaborate and creative than what they can do on Vine. The amount of Vine videos shared on Twitter after the release of Instagram video dropped dramatically by 50 percent. It's clear that for Vine to keep up, it will have to add something innovative that sets it apart, because unless it does, now that users can record videos on Instagram, they won't have a reason to use Vine.
There are smaller technical differences between Vine and Instagram videos. Vine videos automatically loop (play over and over until the user scrolls down), while Instagram has image stabilization and filters. These small technicalities create very different video sharing experiences for users. Instagram has been known to be more for sharing pictures of food and scenery, and the launching of Vine as solely video sharing generated a seemingly more creative community on Vine, sparking some interesting six second videos.