Cinemagram, a startup among those that pioneered short animated video clip sharing on the iPhone when it originally debuted back in 2011, has officially launched its Android app today. The new app brings Cinemagram’s “cine” creation tools to Google’s mobile OS, allowing users to create very short animated GIFs and share them with their followers and on social networks.
The Android version comes at a perfect time for Cinemagram to capitalize on a lack in the market left behind by the absence of Vine on the platform. Vine, which was acquired by Twitter and then debuted an iOS app for capture six second video, launched early this year, and recently become the most-downloaded free app for iPhone. That success means it has likely fared better than competitors like Cinemagram and Flixel.
Cinemagram is similar to Vine, but also allows for expanded filter use and editing options, including the ability to mask certain areas of the capture in order to animate just specific parts within the larger frame. That functionality all makes its way to the Android app, but based on my initial use, a lot of bugs and some uninspiring performance indicates that this was a port rushed to market. The ability to mask video is now hidden behind an FX button, too, which suggests Cinemagram is changing focus even more to emphasize simplified sharing in a way very similar to how it’s handled on Vine.
For good reason, too; recently, a job posting from Vine indicated that it’s looking to bring its product to Android fairly soon, too. For an app like Cinemagram that operates in the same general market as Vine, getting first-mover advantage is a crucial step to owning a fair amount of user share, especially since it doesn’t have the big name backing and distribution support of a parent company and partner like Twitter.
The Android Cinemagram app is free, but users trying it out should be warned that it still feels like a beta product in its current form. Factyle, the company that created Cinemagram, recently raised an $8.5 million Series A round, however, so hopefully that means it has the resources to update quickly and zap any remaining bugs.