New Media – Photovine

August 23, 2011

As part of their concerted effort to provide a more “social” offering, Google has launched a new photo sharing iPhone app called Photovine.

The idea behind Photovine is to use photos to tell stories through “vines”.  These “vines” are a collection of pictures around a caption. For example, if you go to watch Take That you can start a “vine” called ‘Take That Manchester Show’ and publish a picture of the concert. People following you can view this and also ‘join the vine’ by posting their own pictures.

Until now, the app has been in closed beta testing with a very limited number of users. However, it is now open for all to sign up.

Who will use Photovine and why?

Photovine will be aimed at everyone. The amazing popularity of Instagram (last week they surpassed 150 million photos being shared) has demonstrated the mass appeal of the photosharing services and Google has come up with an interesting concept that aims to differentiate itself from its competitors.

The idea of a grouping photos and encouraging people to add to a collection is a great way to drive engagement and is something that will spur users into action.


Photovine also helps to guide users who may be unsure about what photos they want to post – by giving them a theme or topic to follow, which makes it easier for them to get involved. This inclusive guided experience could encourage more people to post their own images.

The fantastic look and feel of the app – something that Google is not generally very good at – also means Photovine can compete with Instagram.

The Future

Photovine seems to have everything in place to be a huge success. The concept is original and the app looks great. It also features everything you would expect from a social network, with friend finding and sharing features on Twitter and Facebook. You can also chat with your followers, setup a profile, add captions and texts to your pictures.

The biggest challenge for Google may be getting enough users using the app to make it viable and ensure the ‘Vines’ concept works  –  though with the launch of Google+, integration between these services looks like a win-win situation, facilitating the growth of both platforms.


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