Twitter's Vine serves users' inner movie maker
Mobile app makes short, looping videos of no more than 6 seconds
Computerworld - It's no longer just about those 140-character tweets. Now Twitter is helping people discover their inner filmmaker.
Twitter announced Thursday the launch of Vine, a service that lets mobile users capture and share short, looping videos. And it's serious about the videos being short: Each one will last six seconds or less.
"Posts on Vine are about abbreviation -- the shortened form of something larger," wrote Dom Hofmann, co-founder and general manager of Vine, in a blog post. "They're little windows into the people, settings, ideas and objects that make up your life. They're quirky, and we think that's part of what makes them so special."
Hofmann also said that Twitter has acquired Vine, but financial details were not released.
Vine users don't need to have a Twitter account, Hofmann said, but signing up is quicker if they do.
"This is a good move for Twitter," said Brian Blau, an analyst at Gartner. "We believe for Twitter to become even more integrated into the consumer and business social ecosystem, it's new product initiatives like Vine that will help propel them in this direction. Adding media types, such as video, is a natural extension for Twitter users to consider and adopt."
Video is more popular than ever, given that more consumers now have smartphones with video capability, Blau said, adding that he expects video usage to continue to grow.
Twitter's video launch will present a challenge for companies like Tout.com and Viddy, which both offer apps for taking short videos and posting them on social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook.
Ezra Gottheil, an analyst with Technology Business Research, said he doesn't see Twitter under serious attack from Tout or Viddy, but he said it's smart for Twitter to try to keep users' eyeballs to itself, instead of sharing them with third-party apps.
"I don't think they'll lose users to a video-based service, but why not include enhancements?" said Gottheil. "So it's a nice new feature, but maybe not a game-changer or a business requirement."
Blau, though, said a video app is important for Twitter's continued growth.
"Twitter needs to take care of [itself], and that means a continued horizontal expansion of their platform and features," he added. "We will see more core services from Twitter come out, and we will also see improvements to existing features, including Vine. I would not be surprised to see Vine become a more useful app over time, and that may mean they tread even more over Tout's features."
Sharon Gaudin covers the Internet and Web 2.0, emerging technologies, and desktop and laptop chips for Computerworld. Follow Sharon on Twitter, at @sgaudin, and on Google+, or subscribe to Sharon's RSS feed . Her email address is email@example.com.
Read more about Social Media in Computerworld's Social Media Topic Center.
- Social Media in Technology: A Unified Strategy for Success Find out how social media is sparking a new era of customer and industry-understanding in technology enterprises and how industry leaders are overcoming...
- Enable secure remote access to 3D data without sacrificing visual perfomance Design and manufacturing companies must adapt quickly to the demands of an increasingly global and competitive economy. To speed time to market for...
- The Truth About Virtual Computing for CAD If you're a user of graphics-intensive software such as 3D modeling, simulation and analysis, and visualization, you might be skeptical about moving to...
- Virtually Delivered High Performance 3D Graphics "A picture is worth a thousand words." That old phrase is as true today as it ever was. Pictures (i.e., those with heavy...
- What should I look for in a Next Generation Firewall? SANS Provides Guidance With so many vendors claiming to have a Next Generation Firewall (NGFW), it can be difficult to tell what makes each one different....
- Why Are Customers Really Deploying an NGFW? It seems every IT Security expert is talking about the NGFW, but what are people really doing? This webcast covers 5 real-world customer... All Social Media White Papers | Webcasts
Our new weekly Consumerization of IT newsletter covers a wide range of trends including BYOD, smartphones, tablets, MDM, cloud, social and what it all means for IT. Subscribe now and stay up to date!