With Hykoo, You Can Combine Video And Text To Create 12-Second Short Films

Despite all the mobile video apps out there, Gary Krieg said there’s still something missing — a need he’s trying to fill with his new app Hykoo.

See, Vine has created its own set of stars, and Meerkat and Periscope offer new platforms for livestreaming, but Krieg pitched Hykoo as an attempt to build an Instagram for video (which, yes, Instagram itself is also doing ). In other words, Hykoo a video tool for people who don’t want to step in front of the camera, but instead just share part of their day or capture something beautiful.

“There’s a new creative class of people enabled by Instagram, but they haven’t quite seen the same adoption in video space,” Krieg said. “Vine has been amazing for people that want to be in front of the camera, and there’s also stop motion, but the rest of us didn’t quite know what to do with it. … We want to convert the Instagram photographers into Hykoo videographer.”

As you probably guessed, the Hykoo was at least partly inspired by the traditional haiku. In place of a haiku’s three lines, a Hykoo consists of three short video clips — a three-second clip, another three-second clip, and then a final clip that’s six seconds long. Each of those clips should have a short text message on top it, and you can also add a visual filter.

The app is pretty strict about the format. You can’t just shoot a single, 12-second video. Krieg argued that by creating three separate clips, you’re essentially sharing a little narrative — even if, say, you’re in a restaurant and the story is just the appetizer, main course, and dessert. As for why the text is necessary, he said:

So much of the context of why someone is making and sharing a piece of content lives outside of the image itself, so our format allows that information to travel together. And if someone says “I don’t know what to write”, I just point to their comments to demonstrate that they totally know what to say. Hykoo is a creative way of adding context to the visual story they want to share.

Krieg comes from a video background himself, having worked as head of production at the New York office of ad agency Wieden + Kennedy. His co-founders are Yoni Bloch, CEO of interactive startup Interlude, and Jane Rosenthal, who also co-founded the Tribeca Film Festival. [Update: There are two other co-founders, Assaf Dagan and Udi Pladott.]

Even though Hykoo is an independent startup, it has connection to both of the organizations I just mentioned. It spun out of Interlude, plus it’s collaborated with the film festival, works out of the Tribeca offices, and is officially launching to coincide with this year’s big event.

Hykoo is currently iOS-only, but Krieg said there are plans for an Android version, and to add more interactivity to the app. Oh, and of course you can share your Hykoos on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, as well as via email and text. Here’s my very first one.