Move over, Vine. The creators of YouTube have created an app for people to collectively edit their own or other people’s videos into one shareable movie.
The free iOS app, called MixBit, became available in Apple's App Store this week, and will soon be followed by an Android version and a Web version. Created by Chad Hurley and Steve Chen’s start up, the two-year-old Avos Systems, the new app extends Instagram’s 15 second video limit, and Vine's six second max, to allow 16 second clips and adds some editing capabilities.
Up to 256 Clips
Hurley and Chen sold YouTube to Google in 2006 for US$ 1.6 billion, and their new startup’s other products include a still-in-development magazine discovery and publishing service.
Basic tools in the app allow users to combine as many as 256 of their or others' video clips into a video lasting between one second and one hour, which then can be shared on the MixBit website, or through Facebook, Google+ or Twitter -- but, interestingly, not through YouTube. Clips can be deleted, trimmed, duplicated, moved or imported.
Hurley told news media that the whole idea was to create "great stories that people can tell." At the moment, Vine does not enable editing, except for stringing your clips together, and just this week Instagram announced new capabilities for videos.
MixBit’s addition of editing features moves the short video app trend toward remixes, which have enjoyed a thriving community in the music world for some time. Expect to see similar and then improved editing tools for communal video from MixBit’s competitors in the not-too-distant-future.
The competitors will also try to emphasize one of MixBit’s current competitive weaknesses -- videos cannot be posted under a user’s name, nor can viewers comment on a creation. These features are highly popular in YouTube and other video-sharing sites, and Hurley has said that such identity features are in the pipeline.
Mini video is booming. Vine, for instance, has risen from a 2 percent penetration on iPhones in January to more than 10 percent in May, and the Android version, released in June, has already been downloaded millions of times.