So far the strategies from video and social networking apps to grow their influence haven’t been so much to create new types of tech, but rather acquire existing programs to add to their network. Perhaps this is why so much buzz is floating around Instagram’s new venture, Hyperlapse, which allows users to make high-quality time-lapse videos.
Instagram, acquired by Facebook for $US1 billion, has been busy. It’s already introduced video clips in an attempt to combat the growth of Twitter’s vine, and private messaging as a way to fight the growth of messaging apps such as Snapchat.
Hyperlapse is yet another attempt to lock users into its network. But it goes beyond simply allowing users to make cool videos and share them with friends. This strategy, conscious or not, is about raising the stakes in video quality a point where all businesses need to pay attention.
As Wired reports, the problem with this type of app is image stabilisation – something used in high quality video cameras but previously unthinkable in a smartphone. Why? The image is shaky – terrible to watch. It looks handheld.
Large studios are able to process the type of algorithms needed to fix shaky-cam effects due to having an abundance of resources. To shrink the effect on a smartphone, Instagram created measurements for track individual frames, and then put them through a single algorithm that can connect frames, giving the perception the camera is being held completely still. It continues the trend of bringing high-quality camerawork to the smartphone, and once again, raising the bar from what we expect from handheld devices.
On a superficial level this raises questions as to how businesses can continue getting away with sub-standard film quality for promotional videos given near-professional grade quality tools are at their disposal for cheap. But it also continues to empower the regular consumer, which raises the stakes – if your customer is creating better videos than you are, they’re not likely to be impressed by anything you do.
Earlier this year, we saw Todd Sampson speak at the SocialBiz conference about one of the last things businesses have at their disposal – creativity. Thankfully, these apps now allow businesses to become more creative than ever before.
Some organisations might dismiss this as a waste of time, but in an era when customers are “always on”, and demand more trust than ever if they’re going to hand over data, building a relationship through creativity is exactly what might be required.