Viddy has been busy aptly cornering the social video market, and it seems like a week hasn’t gone by where the team is announcing yet another celebrity who has joined its forces or another round of fundraising has been completed. But luckily for its more than 30 million users, the app has released a significant feature update today.
There are some big user-facing changes, including the option to choose your thumbnail cover art for Viddy clips. Now videos will have a nice, Instagram-like image instead of just the first frame and play icon. Viddy has also expanded editing, with the ability to add mix-and-match effects and custom soundtracks to your videos – including new music that’s available for download. This is no doubt a neat little marketing tool that also benefits users.
The Viddy Website has also received a nice makeover. Viddy is absolutely a mobile-first application, and most of its Web presence can be felt over on Facebook thanks to its relatively early Timeline integration. But it’s paying some attention to its proprietary site, which is something users should love to see developers doing. Sure, the digital-social world is being taken over by Facebook and mobile platforms (soon to merge? Stay tuned on that front) at an alarming rate, but having a sophisticated Web option just rounds out the user experience nicely. Now you are able to browse, comment on, share, and like videos all from the site. The interface has been cleaned up nicely as well, which is most evidenced by the lightbox viewing format.
Viddy’s also made an under the hood tweaks that don’t sound quite as sexy but are arguably much more important. Rendering times have been improved so that they’re twice as fast as before, something the startup says it’s going to continue focusing on. The photo-sharing app revolution came quick and suddenly, and while there’s been a lot of attention to video, it’s been slower-going – largely because developing video apps that actually work well and relatively quickly is more complicated than working with still images. But Viddy’s been pioneering the trade, with plenty of competition trailing close at its heels.
The team is reaching out to its international users better as well by introducing more languages. Viddy will now be available in Japanese, Korean, Spanish, Chinese (Simplified), Chinese (Traditional), Thai, Filipino, and Portuguese. In the quest to become the “Instagram of video,” the winner will have to think global, which Viddy’s clearly doing.
It’s all enough to add fuel the very, very quiet whispers about Facebook buying Viddy. But while Viddy’s come a long way in a short time, the social video niche is still finding its footing, and there’s much more growth and experimentation to be done.