Facebook’s popular photo-sharing app ,Instagram will now have video. Facebook is trying to stay competitive, since Twitter’s video-sharing app, Vine is growing. On Thursday, Kevin Systrom, Instagram’s co-founder said users will now be able to record and share 15-second clips. All they have to do is tap the video icon in the app. Users will also be able to apply filters to videos and add contrast, make them black and white, or different hues.
Systrom said, “This is the same Instagram we all know and love, but it moves.”
The Vine app was launched in January and currently has 13 million users. Vine users can create and share 6-second video clips. Instagram currently has over 130 million users, which is an increase from the 22 million when it was first bought by Facebook over a your ago. Systrom said that mobile video sharing could be propelled into the mainstream, if users like it.
If you’ve downloaded the latest version of Instagram, you can use the video feature by tapping on the same camera icon you use to snap photos. This will generate a new video camera icon on the right side. When you tap it, a screen with a red video button allows you to record clips of sunsets, kids running in parks, or coworkers staring at computer screens.
You will be able to record as long as your fingers on the red button for up to 15 seconds. Once you take your finger off the button, the recording will stop. Of course, you can still shoot scenes from different angles or completely change scenes and record something else. Either way, you’ll be able to play it from the beginning, and post it on Instagram to share with your friends.
The Instagram app has the “cinema” feature, which adds stability to videos so they won’t look like shaky amateur shots. Systrom said it was “completely mind blowing.” At present, only iPhone 4S or iPhone 5 owners are able to shoot video using this feature.
Eden Zoller, principal consumer analyst at Ovum, a technology research firm said, “Given Vine’s popularity, it is perhaps more surprising that Facebook has not introduced video for Instagram sooner. There is no doubt Twitter will move quickly to up the ante online and this could undercut Facebook’s efforts with video on Instagram.”
Nate Elliot, an analyst at Forrester Research said, “Taking features from smaller rivals and offering them to a much larger set of users has worked well for Facebook so far. It also keeps Facebook’s services fresh, and is one of the reasons more than 1 billion people still use the site every month.”
Facebook agreed to by Instagram in 2012 and offered $1 billion in cash and stock. However, the deal’s value fell to $715 million by the time it closed in August. So far, this is the only company Facebook has bought and continues to run as a separate application. Previous to this purchase, Facebook’s deals were all “Acqui-hires.” These deals are popular in Silicon Valley as a way for company to purchase talented workers of a startup and then shut the acquired company down.
As of today, Facebook has not confirmed how it will make money on Instagram. There are currently no ads on the servic. As online video ads continue to grow, it’s just a matter of time before they’ll make it to Facebook and Instagram. According to research firm eMarketer, the US digital video advertising market will increase 41 percent this year. The company is predicting that it will increase to $4.1 billion from $2.9 billion in 2012. The mobile video ad market is a lot smaller, but eMarketer predicts that it will more than double to $518 million this year.