For those who were just getting used to Vine, you now have another option for video sharing. Yes! It’s good ol’ Instagram, but reinvented with a new video recording feature. Should Vine be concerned?
Facebook announced the launch of Instagram’s new feature last Thursday, in a strategic move to compete head-to-head with Twitter’s app, Vine.
“Over the past two and a half years, Instagram has become a community where you can capture and share the world’s moments simply and beautifully,” said Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom. “Some moments, however, need more than a static image to come to life.”
Even though Vine launched earlier this year, Instagram has been working on their video recording initiative since September of 2011. Why did Instagram take so long to enter the market? And who will win the competition over instant video?
Recommended for YouWebcast: The Art of Growth Hacking: Gaining Early Traction by Doing Things that Don't Scale
clearCi’s competitive intelligence software tracked a few topics for discussion to help you draw your own conclusion:
So far, clearCi found that both platforms have video sharing, front-facing camera, auto playing, automatic sound, automatic saving to camera and tagging. Both also allow their users to shoot videos only from the app.
Now let’s explore the differences:
On Vine, users can upload a six-second video, but they have no options on filters, cover frames, photo map or image stabilization, which Instagram features. On the other hand, Instagram users can upload a 15-second video and do everything they can do on Vine except for looping and embedding videos.
Who are they targeting?
Well these apps are mostly used in smartphones, let’s not forget that behind smartphones lie creative people that love to share their lifestyle with others. Their online platforms, although appealing, are fairly basic and not a whole lot intuitive, so being on a smartphone is a prerequisite. To be exact, Pew Internet Research suggests that you can expect to find 28 percent of Instagram users aged 18-29, 14 percent of users 30-49, and very few 50 years-old and up.
Without a doubt, one of the benefits Instagram has over Vine is their massive audience. Instagram currently has 130 million active users, which most likely will adopt the video feature. On the other hand, Vine recently reached 13 million users. One up for Instagram! But since mobile Internet traffic has nearly tripled in the last two years, either platform could gain popularity quickly.
But could it be that both apps appeal to different audiences?
If you prefer natural and shorter videos that make a statement, then Vine is for you. Vine’s focus is not on filters, that enhance videos, but on creating a wow, six-second looped (or repeated) video. But for those that want pink skies and blue grass, longer videos to form into mini stories, then Instagram should be your top choice.
Instagram’s video component can be the app for the amateur videographers and those with shaky hands, since the app will have a feature that will help stabilize unsteady videos.
Regardless of the audience, clearCi suspects that both apps will try to use their platform for ads since six to 15 seconds is long enough to promote a product or service. And, even though companies are not using Instagram or Vine as much as they are using Facebook and Twitter, brands should keep an eye on their target audience with these apps to see what their audience is doing online. Hashtags make it very easy for companies to get real-time, visual hints on customer intelligence- for free!
So let’s put it this way: sure Twitter’s app has earned new competition, but Facebook’s app shouldn’t celebrate yet. Twitter could come back and create an Instagram-like component for Vine to share pictures. Oh the possibilities!
For those who are still not sure which app to go with, try both and see for yourself.
So, who will win the race in the photo/video sharing app market? Only time will tell. We saw it with Google’s Buzz, now Google Plus, which remained very niche and small enough to never become a real threat to Facebook. So far it seems like Facebook’s app will take center stage, since Instagram hits 5M video uploads in their first 24 hours. In the meantime, clearCi will continue to track updates about new social media trends, just in case YouTube wakes up and decides to bring something revolutionary to the market.