Live blog: Facebook announces video for Instagram

Mark Zuckerberg responds to press questions and photos after announcing the new Facebook News Feed redesign on March 7 in Menlo Park.

Amid lots of speculation about what the future holds for Instagram under Facebook’s ownership, the companies demonstrated what video clips will look like when captured through Instagram.

The event started at 10am PT and our live coverage of the event as it unfolded follows below. A few more details about the app can be found here, and we’ll have much more coverage from the event later today.

Eliza Kern 10:41:41 am

And that’s it, folks. A pretty short announcement, all things considered. We’ll be demo-ing the app and following up with more coverage.

Eliza Kern 10:41:06 am

Systrom keeps emphasizing that this won’t change Instagram very much — it’s still the same app, he says.

Eliza Kern 10:40:09 am

Systrom is re-iterating that your photos and videos are your own — no plan to use them in advertisements.

Eliza Kern 10:39:33 am

Just realized the app is available for download, and tried out recording Systrom talking. Pretty easy to record and filter, just like the photo app.

Eliza Kern 10:37:16 am

“We want you to learn about this new concept called video for Instagram.”

Eliza Kern 10:36:33 am

I’ve heard that’s a major complaint with Vine — not being able to come back later and post your videos after the fact. But it sounds like that option could be coming down the road.

Eliza Kern 10:36:09 am

So no, right now you can’t upload videos from the camera roll. You have to record them in the app.

Eliza Kern 10:35:08 am

“Right now we’re perfectly happy with how businesses are engaging on Instagram, which is organically.”

Eliza Kern 10:34:31 am

He’s always said Instagram will become a business, and advertisers are using Instagram to reach their fans. “But on video, I don’t think we designed it with any advertising in mind.”

Eliza Kern 10:34:06 am

“This is really driven by consumer demand and not by business need,” Systrom said.

Eliza Kern 10:33:32 am

“Our goal is to not introduce a complex editing interface.”

Eliza Kern 10:33:16 am

First we get a good clarification — the entire clip is only 15 seconds. You can tap and hold to create shorter clips within that 15 seconds, but it’s not any longer than that total.

Eliza Kern 10:32:33 am

Important question — can you upload video taken after the fact?

Eliza Kern 10:31:40 am

“Our hope is not very long at all,” Systrom says of a question about how long videos will load. “But we have to set expectations. This is day one.”

Eliza Kern 10:31:01 am

“It’s that Goldilocks moment. It seems just right,” Systrom says of the choice.

Eliza Kern 10:30:43 am

“I think it’s an artistic choice. I don’t think one is better than the other,” Systrom says of six seconds versus 15.

Eliza Kern 10:29:40 am

“It was a big undertaking, but we don’t expect it to be an issue,” Systrom says of the infrastructure challenges.

Eliza Kern 10:29:17 am

Systrom is still on stage taking questions.

Eliza Kern 10:28:11 am

Now we’re heading into Q&A.

Eliza Kern 10:27:57 am

Whether or not my videos and your videos will look that cool, we’ll have to wait and try the app to see.

Eliza Kern 10:27:38 am

“Introducing Video on Instagram,” it ends.

Eliza Kern 10:27:29 am

It’s very clever — all the same images we saw before the announcement, that showed why Instagram is great, are now moving and turning into videos.

Eliza Kern 10:27:03 am

Now we’re looking at some pretty goregous shots of people walking around SF, playing with pugs and babies, etc.

Tom Krazit 10:26:37 am

Eliza Kern 10:26:30 am

Now we’re going to watch a video they compiled from footage from users.

Eliza Kern 10:26:05 am

“I’m really proud of this team,” Systrom says. He does seem excited.

Eliza Kern 10:25:47 am

This makes sense — it’s like the video version of the photo effect that makes your photos “pop.”

Eliza Kern 10:25:32 am

So the effect kind of slows down the video and makes it easier to watch. Pretty amazing.

Eliza Kern 10:25:07 am

“We created something really awesome. We call it Cinema. Cinematic stabilization for your videos that will change video forever.”

Eliza Kern 10:24:27 am

A lot of video looks kinda shaky and wobbly, he says, pointing to a shaky photo of a cute kid on a bike.

Eliza Kern 10:24:05 am

But wait — something more, Systrom says.

Eliza Kern 10:23:47 am

That’s important — Android users were huge for growing Instagram to where it is today. Getting the new app to everyone is important.

Tom Krazit 10:23:27 am

Eliza Kern 10:23:03 am

And on day one, Android users will get it too.

Eliza Kern 10:22:50 am

13 custom-designed filters “to make your videos gorgeous,” Systrom notes.

Eliza Kern 10:22:27 am

“We’ve worked a ton on making it fast, simple, and beautiful.”

Eliza Kern 10:22:18 am

The filters definitely make the videos look better than Vine videos — kind of the same effect as they have on photos.

Eliza Kern 10:22:02 am

So the feed looks pretty much identical as before, except some of the photos move.

Tom Krazit 10:21:20 am

Eliza Kern 10:20:24 am

“I want to talk with you about a problem in mobile video.” He is not talking about internet speeds, but rather the problem of the first frame not always being that exciting.

Eliza Kern 10:19:32 am

So pretty much the exact same workflow as Instagram for photos. Only difference is that you’re recording clips instead of photos.

Eliza Kern 10:19:12 am

Once you’ve recorded your clips, you hit next and select video-specific filters.

Eliza Kern 10:18:47 am

This could be a problem for serving up video quickly. Multiple 15 second videos could take a veryy long time to load on a bad connection.

Eliza Kern 10:18:22 am

So you can record multiple 15 second clips at the bottom, if you can’t fit everything into one clip.

Eliza Kern 10:18:00 am

It’s not too short, to constrain your creativity, Systrom says. “But not all the time can you fit a single scene into 15 seconds.”

Eliza Kern 10:17:37 am

The magic number? 15 seconds.

Eliza Kern 10:17:30 am

Tap the video icon, and you go into video mode. Tap the icon to record video.

Eliza Kern 10:17:04 am

It looks exactly like the current app, with the same caputure screen but now a video icon in the bottom right.

Eliza Kern 10:16:47 am

We’re about to get a demo.

Eliza Kern 10:16:32 am

So perhaps we’ll see filters for your video to distinguish from Vine? Sounds like the aesthetics are the emphasis here.

Eliza Kern 10:16:10 am

“It wouldn’t be Instagram without being beautiful. It woudln’t be Instagram without allowing you to create beautiful content.”

Eliza Kern 10:15:48 am

It’s hard to edit video and manage it and upload, he says. Yep, video can be tough.

Eliza Kern 10:15:33 am

130 million people day one will have access to video the way they have access to pictures, Systrom says. That’s huge, that they’re not rollling out yet another FB app.

Eliza Kern 10:14:58 am

“I’d like to introduce video on Instagram.”

Tom Krazit 10:14:56 am

Eliza Kern 10:14:51 am

It was really hard to do that. But today, that changes.

Eliza Kern 10:14:42 am

“We left video on the side. Why did we do that? Because the three things we cared about were speed, simplicity, and beauty.”

Eliza Kern 10:14:23 am

Ah, now we’re hearing the much-documented story of how Systrom and Krieger built Instagram out of their former app called Burbn.

Eliza Kern 10:13:57 am

“I’m going to tell you a story. Of September 2010.”

Eliza Kern 10:13:35 am

“Now we should discuss where we’re going.”

Eliza Kern 10:13:19 am

That’s up from 100 million just a few months ago, and it’s important to note that’s active users, not just registered folks.

Eliza Kern 10:13:02 am

130 million people use Instagram every month.

Eliza Kern 10:12:51 am

They get 1 billion likes (or hearts, or double-taps) every day.

Eliza Kern 10:12:33 am

That’s a lot of brunch pics.

Eliza Kern 10:12:28 am

He’s going to tell us some stats on how far Instagram has come. 16 billion photos shared.

Eliza Kern 10:11:55 am

Now he’s rolling through a screen showing us people’s different Instagrams — a cute pug, a baby, someone skydiving.

Eliza Kern 10:11:16 am

I spy a theme there…

Eliza Kern 10:11:11 am

“Instagram is a way to stay connected,” he says. “Instagram keeps us connected.”

Eliza Kern 10:10:46 am

There are moments that we know we’ll never get back that we capture through Instagram.

Eliza Kern 10:10:16 am

It’s all about moments, he says.

Tom Krazit 10:10:08 am

Eliza Kern 10:09:51 am

It’s a tough question, not because it’s not discoverable, not because it’s intangible, but because it depends who is asking, he says.

Eliza Kern 10:09:33 am

A lot of people ask him, what is Instagram, he asks.

Eliza Kern 10:09:14 am

Now we have Instagram co-founder and CEO Kevin Systrom on stage.

Eliza Kern 10:08:59 am

“Kevin and Mike are now some of the most influential leaders across all of Facebook.”

Eliza Kern 10:08:46 am

They were doing photography in a way that was really unique to mobile devices. The team is now triple the size of before.

Eliza Kern 10:08:21 am

A little more than a year ago, we asked them to join us, he says.

Eliza Kern 10:08:11 am

“Today, we’re going to focus on Instagram.”

Eliza Kern 10:08:02 am

We share in all sorts of ways, he says, from the Facebook Pages to apps like Instagram.

Tom Krazit 10:07:56 am

Eliza Kern 10:07:17 am

As our mobile strategy has evolved, we’ve been developing a variety of types of apps.

Eliza Kern 10:06:59 am

Surprise, he wants to make the world more connected! Sharing is a powerful thing, he tells us.

Eliza Kern 10:06:43 am

“It’s a big idea that a small team is working on.”

Eliza Kern 10:06:34 am

And Mark is on stage.

Eliza Kern 10:01:23 am

We should be starting in just a few minutes, we hear.

Eliza Kern 9:58:00 am

I can put my feet on Facebook’s coffee table, right?

Eliza Kern 9:57:42 am

Eliza Kern 9:52:13 am

Not a huge crowd so far — certainly not as big as the group that was here for the Android announcement, which makes sense.

Eliza Kern 9:50:06 am

Hey guys! We’re here at FB getting set up. Nothing’s started yet.


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