Skip to main content

Twitter Intros Service for Authoring, Sharing Short Looped Videos

If you live and breathe Twitter on a daily basis, then you may be highly tickled over news of a new video service offered by the social network. Called Vine, it's a mobile service that lets you capture and share short looping videos. Just like tweets, Vine forces users to be short and sweet with their video posts, as each clip will only be allotted up to six seconds.

"Posts on Vine are about abbreviation – the shortened form of something larger," said Dom Hofmann, co-fonder and general manager of Vine. "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."

Twitter scooped up the New York-based three-man company before it had a chance to launch on its own back in October 2012. Formed in June 2012, Vine promised a service that allowed for "punctuated" recording on a smartphone rather than one continuous shot. A user can shoot quick snips of video simply by using a finger, and the Vine app will stitch them together into a longer, single cut.

AllThingsD reports that Hofmann and cofounder Colin Kroll worked at JetSetter, Gilt Groupe's travel site, before launching Vine last year. Other backers of the startup company included RRE, IAC’s High Line Venture Partners and David Tisch. The total investment was around $1 million, the report said.

Currently the Vine app is only available for the iPhone and iPod Touch. In presentation, it looks similar to Instagram, offering a main feed upon startup. But instead of stringing icons along the bottom, a Home icon at the top-left corner pulls down a menu providing access to the user's profile, an explore feature, and activity associated with the user's posts.

The difference from Instagram (outside of the video focus) is that the main feed doesn't rely on those the user follows – it's based on the latest additions to the network. Videos also automatically load which can be annoying if you're not keen on watching everyone's videos. So far I've created one video, and it has yet to show up on Twitter or Facebook despite reading "connected" – network congestion, perhaps.

"Like Twitter, we want to make it easier for people to come together to share and discover what's happening in the world," Hofman added. "We also believe constraint inspires creativity, whether it's through a 140-character Tweet or a six-second video."

To download the app for iPhone and iPod Touch, head over to iTunes here.