When Vine first launched on the web, all you could do was view your stream and check out profiles for individual users. The desktop version came with TV Mode, too, which was admittedly addictive with its constant stream of full-screen content.
But today Vine is going big on the web, bringing a number of the navigation and discovery features you’re used to in the app straight to your desktop. Plus, all of the content is accessible to anyone on the web, with no sign-in required.
Alongside your Vine feed and user profile streams, Vine will now show a featured section that includes Editors Picks, cool playlists, and special featured videos.
You’ll also have access to channels, trending tags, and a popular page, just as you do in the app.
Perhaps more importantly, users don’t have to be logged in to Vine on the web to surf through these channels or featured Vine videos. Previously, to use Vine on the web, you had to be signed in or hunt down the URL for a user profile. Now, simply hitting up Vine.co will give you access to all of the best content on Vine, complete with TV mode, which plays them one after the other in full-screen.
This is a refreshing update considering that most mobile-first companies have limited and poorly designed web counterparts to keep people active in the main (mobile) experience. Instagram.com, with its limited feature set and crappy performance, is perhaps the most shameful example.
The future of Vine as it exists within Twitter’s long-term plan remains unclear. Since launching over a year ago, two of the co-founders have left the company, but it seems that the app continues to enjoy an active user base. This move, however, is a clearer step away from competing with Instagram on a mobile consumption level and focusing more on how mobile video creation and true video consumption play into each other.
In a way, Vine is inching closer and closer to being a YouTube competitor, where users can create short videos on mobile and yet still experience all the wonders of the laid-back YouTube-style consumption experience.
To be perfectly honest, video creation nor consumption is where it needs to be for it to take off in the way that mobile photos have, and part of the problem is inherent in video itself. A photo requires perfection or correctness or whatever for a single moment in time, and can be enhanced beyond that. Video, however, requires that perfection or correctness to extend for seconds and seconds.
A lot more talent, creativity, and attention to detail goes into creating an enjoyable video, and just as Twitter did with its own product, the company has used restriction to force quality content out of its users. Vine actually stands a chance at being the place where we finally enter into a world of mobile video immersion and addiction, and herding people over to the web to consume is a surprisingly smart way to start.
To check out the new Vine.co in all its glory, head on over by clicking here. Though, be forewarned, it looks like it might not be up and running quite yet.