As everyone suspected – Instagram, and therefore Facebook, have introduced video. With 130 million users against Twitter – friendly Vine’s 13 million, it is understandable why they have made such a move. Vine has been sitting at number 1 in the app store for a lot of the time it’s been live since January this year. Instavideo, as it has been dubbed, is definitely a direct competitor to Vine and has benefitted from witnessing their teething problems.
The Instagram video updates were available on Instagram 4.0 on iPhone and Android since the end of the announcement yesterday and are already being used by users and brands alike. The update allows the all-important filters to be used, they are optimized for video but are very similar to Instagram’s original effects. It also has some improvements – because you record from touching a button, not the screen, it is possible to alter the focus and exposure of a video. It has also honed in on the fact that users may not appreciate an interruption on their endless stream of photos and instead has allowed viewing videos only when they are clicked on. Users can choose the thumbnail image in order to make their video more attractive and other users more likely to click it. There is also no endless loop and each video can last from 3 to 15 seconds – and they can be edited (!) but only reverse chronological order. The first reviews are already out and it looks like Vine and Instagram are already in a heated competition.
Facebook product ratings
Facebook have been encouraging users to add more content to their timelines recently. Users are prompted to list what films they’ve seen to the books they’ve read, which is then added to the left of the timeline. Now the social platform wants ratings for the products included. There is now a starring system available at the bottom of each product. This then appears to push more recommendations to the system and the user.
New Myspace launch
The new Myspace (now with just one capital letter) came out of beta this week with a new, much more attractive design. The social network now has a main focus on music and creatives – when first visiting the new site users are asked what ‘kind’ of person you are; a writer, a developer, a musician etc. However, any previous information, like blog posts and pictures have been removed. Many have been complaining that there is no way to access their old information again, but for some users it will bring about a sigh of relief as embarrassing content from social media’s early days have given way to a clean slate.
Myspace now has a new mobile app that features a GIF creator to help users create and share GIFs easily. The app also features social radio that creates a stream of music catered to user’s tastes, going into competition with sites such as Spotify and Pandora. But Myspace seems to have a twist – artists are curating their own radio stations for fans – with Pharrell Williams and Justin Timberlake already on board. The Myspace team is stressing the importance of user feedback to the re-launch’s success – along with a new $20m advertising campaign.
Facebook introduces comment ordering
Page administrators can now view replies to comments on Facebook’s ranked comments. The most active conversations are shown at the top of the thread and comments marked as spam are moved to the bottom. Administrators can also view by recent activity – with the comments in chronological order.