Monday, October 29, 2012

Instagram for Video -- Why It's So Hard

Instagram -- THE picture sharing, picture enhancement social network -- was recently acquired by Facebook, of course, for a price between $600Million and $1Billion (depending on where Facebook's share price is at any given moment in time).  So, with video permeating the web and our lives now on every device, an "Instagram for Video" is the next best thing.  Right?

Not so fast.  Video is a very different beast entirely -- contextually, technically, and experiencially.

I recently wrote about these fundamental differences in TechCrunch in a post titled "Instagram for Video -- Massive Opportunity, Yes!  Done Right, No!"  In it, I discuss the significant hurdles facing those VC-backed companies trying to crack the nut (both private and publicly-held companies).  I also offer a recipe to succeed.

Following my TechCrunch piece, two others offered their own "takes" in TechCrunch about this topic (both of whom cited my original piece).  Just yesterday, filmmaker Armando Kirmin posted a piece in TechCrunch titled "The Sad State of Video Apps" in which he focuses on the filmmaking process and how it is radically different than still photo capture (apart from the technical issues I cited in my piece).  And, previously, Sandeep Casi focused on the fundamental differences between video and still images from purely a content perspective (and how translatable personal video content is to others) in a TechCrunch piece titled "Cloning Instagram for Video Will Not Revolutionize Mobile Video."

Together, these three pieces tie together the supreme challenges facing the "Instagram for Video" quest by tens of start-ups, as well as the massive market opportunity if they were able to succeed.  My ultimate conclusion is that it will be one of the tech industry behemoths that ultimately will be the one that comes closest.

And, that won't be Instagram owner Facebook.  For the reasons discussed in my piece, it most likely will be one of the consumer electronic behemoths.