Seems like Facebook is on an innovative spree these days. After adding the photo-as-comment feature, it has now moved to some drastic changes to its own popular photo-sharing app, Instagram.
In an urge to keep up with Twitter's growing video-sharing app, Vine, Facebook is adding video to Instagram.
Instagram co-founder Kevin Systrom said on Thursday that users will be able to record and share 15-second clips by tapping a video icon in the app. They can also apply filters to videos to add contrast, make them black and white or different hues.
"We need to do to video what we did to photos," Instagram co-founder Kevin Systrom said while unveiling Video On Instagram at a press event at Facebook's headquarters in the Silicon Valley city of Menlo Park. "This is the same Instagram we all know and love but it moves," he added.
Keeping up with Vine
Vine, which launched in January, has 13 million users and lets people create and share 6-second video clips. Instagram has 100 million users, up from 20 million when Facebook bought the company more than a year ago. If users like it, Facebook's move could propel mobile video sharing into the mainstream.
Instagram video apps tailored for iPhones and smartphones powered by Google-backed Android software feature 13 filters for special effects and post to people's Facebook pages the same way pictures do, according to Systrom.
Instagram engineers worked with leading video scientists to develop a "cinema" feature that stabilizes shaking that is typical in smartphone video.
How to use
To use the video feature, Instagram users can tap on the same camera icon they use to snap photos. A new video camera icon will appear on the right side. Tap it and a screen with a red video button will let you record clips of sunsets, kids running in parks or co-workers staring at their computer screens. The app will record as long as your finger is on the red button or for 15 seconds, whichever comes first.
Facebook acquired Instagram last year. The original price was pegged at $1 billion but the final value was less because of a decline in the social network's share price.
Twitter earlier this year launched Vine, a service that lets people share video snippets up to six seconds long.
It's going to be a neck-to-neck battle between the two networking giants. We as customers are are in for a treat.