Editor’s Note: The following article is a guest post submitted by James Parsons of Social Monsters.
As is so often the case, the latest social media war pitting Facebook’s new Instagram video service against Twitter’s Vine can be boiled down to user numbers, with Instagram taking the lead.
But in the end, it may not be a numbers game so much as an advantage in timing.
With Facebook’s Instagram boasting more than 100 million users, the mere idea of it adding video to the photo sharing app has many predicting the social media giant will drive Twitter’s young, but successful, Vine app out of existence. Though that number is hard to compete with, Twitter’s Vine was able to rack up 13 million users in its first four months, while it took Instagram nearly a year to earn 10 million users.
Despite all these numbers, the fact remains that Instagram came late to the table, leaving other industry analysts to suggest that Vine will continue to thrive, despite the long shadow of Instagram obscuring it from focus. Instagram’s video app has some catching up to do — it isn’t yet available for the Blackberry Bold from T-Mobile, for example — but in the end, it may be that Vine’s head start will be a bigger hurdle for Instagram video than anticipated.
Here are five key differences between the services so you can make your own decision on which you’d like to use.
The most obvious — and most talked about — difference between the two apps is the length of video. Instagram offers users a lengthy 15 seconds compared to Vine’s six seconds. But detractors point out Instagram as having too much of a good thing. And in many cases, 15 seconds may just be too much.
Perhaps the second most obvious difference between the two apps is Vine’s looping, which many have found to provide a good platform for animation. This one will be a difficult one for Instagram to address since few people would be interested in watching a longer video repeatedly.
It’s hard to go wrong shooting with Vine. All you need to do is touch your finger anywhere on the screen and you’re off and running. Instagram requires instead that you touch a specific button on the screen. While the button is easy to use, it still isn’t quite as easy as tapping the screen anywhere. A small difference, but still one worth noting.
Instagram video offers a usable feature that will allow you to stabilize the video that you’ve just shot. While this feature probably wouldn’t make much sense on the shorter videos allowed on Vine, it is a great feature for those shooting in rocky places.
This comparison is relatively straightforward since it can be sorted down to just two things: Instagram allows video editing as well as the option to add one of its unique filters to your video. Vine has recently released a teaser video though, hinting it may be able to save drafts in the future.
This is where some believe Instagram comes out the overall winner. By not building a separate app, Facebook has given Instagram easy access to 130 million monthly users right out of the gate.
And the Winner is...
Like many situations, it can be difficult to identify clear winners and losers. A lot will come down to user preference, which can vary widely and be somewhat difficult to predict. By understanding some of the key components of these two video apps, you can best choose the one that fits your specific needs.
|About the Author|
James has been a mobile app developer and researcher at Social Monsters for 2 years. An expert in small business trends and mobile technology, he is a dad first and a mobile app developer second.