The challenge has been put out – Create the “Instagram of Video”. It was an underlying thought, then brought out and jumped on like wildfire by the media (proven by the plethora of tech articles released over the last 6 months). We’ve definitely seen a number of mobile apps working toward this (Viddy, Socialcam, etc.). I don’t want to down play any of the successes each respective app has taken, but I would like to give a different perspective on said “challenge”.
Instagram was revolutionary for three reasons:
1. Redefined a process
2. Took advantage of a relatively untouched mobile market
3. Made photos better.
Redefining the process for photo was what made Instagram. No longer did you have to upload to a computer, use a photo editor to change the contrast and lighting, then create and organize albums on your social profiles. People could take a picture with their mobile, use one of the preset filters on that photo, then immediately upload that polished masterpiece to their social profiles. Simple. I was recently at a networking event, hosted by the BDC (Business Development Bank of Canada), where Michael Hyatt (Founder & CEO, BlueCat Networks) put it very simply… “Instagram made photos better”. That they most certainly did. It was a beautifully formed alliance of existing technology.
The problem with video is that the artistic delivery greatly differs from that of photo. Photo captures beauty and style, while at the same time leaving everything up in the air, open to interpretation. Video prompts a deeper level of engagement through the collaboration of sound, movement and emotion. Video allows the creator to tell a story by whatever method they see fit. A completely different art form, a completely different means of self expression.
The replication of Instagram for video isn’t the “revolution” that will create an entirely redefined experience. The market needs something new thrown in the mix. What needs to change is the way that people interact with video; the experience in itself. Video is a much more interactive multimedia medium, so why not parallel that by changing the experience? Why not make the experience itself more interactive and create a platform conducive to that? Better yet, why not take a flourishing market trend and mesh that with the experience?
That’s what we’re looking to do with my startup – Eyeplots. We have a long road ahead of us, but I am a true believer that this is the direction that mobile video needs to take. There will always be a place for video editing tools on mobile devices, but I don’t believe that it will translate to a tidal wave market spike like that created by Instagram.