Vine, Twitter’s new video app, is off to a solid start

What is Vine?

If you’re on Twitter frequently, chances are you’ve heard about Vine. It’s Twitter’s free video-sharing app which offers a new way for users to share their stories – by way of short, six second, looping video clips. Vine is currently only available for the iPhone and iPod Touch, to download the app click here.

How do I use Vine?

While six seconds may seem like a short time frame, you can pack it with a surprising amount of content. To start the camera rolling, just press and hold your finger on the screen. When you lift your finger off, Vine stops recording video. If you put your finger back on again, the video recording continues, so you can stop and start your action as many times as you like, giving the video a stop-in-motion effect. Since Vine has not yet developed a way to edit videos, the stop-and-start method is the only way to change scenes.

The application displays as a feed, much like you see on Twitter or Instagram. When you post your Vine video to Twitter, it shows up both as a video which automatically plays and a link which leads to the Vine website.

Social Media Aspect of Vine

Vine is not just about creating videos, it’s also about sharing them. Once you create a video, you have the option to post it to the Vine community, Twitter or Facebook. Prior to uploading your video Vine provides a place to add a caption for your video and, like Instagram, categorizes videos using hashtags. The videos post to the news feed, with options to “like,” represented by a smiley face button, or comment with the “editor’s picks” showing up first on the news feed.

How Vine is Solving Issues

As expected with a very new social platform, Vine is experiencing some growing pains. Yesterday, the video-sharing platform changed their user age rating from 12+ to 17+ because of complaints about the volume of pornographic content and added a “frequent/intense sexual content or nudity” warning that appears prior to download. Users also have the ability to report offensive content.

With the growing popularity of the app, keep an eye out for additional features to be added as well. Currently, there is no way to use the iPhone front-facing camera, save content mid-vine, or edit before posting. All video must be taken vertically, zoom is not available and focusing is difficult.

While users can use the “Find my Friends” feature on Vine, it does not show an accurate list of who you follow on Twitter, forcing users to manually search one by one for people they follow all over again. In addition, using the “@” symbol does not prompt any drop down menu where users can select from a list to tag someone. If you type in the tag, it will recognize the username in a tweet.

Twitter has responded with updates and surely improvements will keep coming.

A Little History

Twitter officially released the video sharing app on January 14, 2013 and it spent some time in the “Top 5 Apps” section of the App Store. It’s currently #17 for free apps.

Twitter bought Vine back in October before rolling out an Instagram-style photo editing feature through Aviary in December.

Vine opens up a world of possibilities for sharing what’s happening in the present moment. What do you think of the new video sharing app?


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