It’s been speculated for a little while now that Instagram (now owned by Facebook) would be debuting its own video sharing service to directly compete with Twitter and its Vine network. Having seen Vine get a head-start, it was important that Facebook did it right, and that it did. Instagram – unlikely Twitter – decided to implement the new video capturing interface within the existing app, and didn’t release a brand new program.
To use it, make sure you’ve updated Instagram app to version 4.0.0. Open up the app as usual and you’ll see a new video camera icon to the right of the regular camera capture button. Tap it, and you’ll get a brand new interface to play with. Similar to Vine, you create videos by pressing and holding the record button. When you press it, a bright red circular video camera icon takes center stage. Above that is the ‘switch camera’ icon for – you guessed it – switching between the front facing and rear iSight camera. Everything else on screen is familiar. It has the same square viewfinder and two icons on the top to cancel or go to the next stage.
Apart from the fact you record video, everything else will seem second nature. When your video is shot, hit ‘next’ and choose one of the new custom filters designed specifically for the video setting. Once you’re happy you can choose a single frame as the cover image and then go to the usual sharing options.
All-in-all it makes for a compelling argument against Vine. With so many faithful Instagram users, will Vine become a hardly-used niche? It’s hard to tell, but I for one don’t see the need to have both apps on my phone any more. And, since Instagram is a great place to check out photos too, I deleted Vine.