Prater: New app creates mini music videos

Nia Prater

Nia PraterFirst comes Vine, then comes Mindie? The latest follow-up to the quickly-popular application adds a new element to micro-videos: music.

Video loops became an Internet phenomenon through the launch of Vine in January. The app, which was originally exclusive to OS and is now available for Android devices and Windows Phones, records six-second videos and continuously loops them. The finished product can then be shared to the user’s Twitter and Facebook profiles.

Mindie is a fairly new app that was released in mid-October by the developer Ever. At first glance, the app appears to be just another copycat. Similar to Vine, it records short videos, though Mindie offers up to seven seconds to users. However, the major difference between the two apps is Mindie’s ability to select a track that will play during the video that will loop as well.

Before you even shoot your video, Mindie utilizes the iTunes API to allow the user to search through 30-second previews of songs. After a track is chosen, the app takes a seven-second clip from the preview that will be used as the soundtrack to the finished product.

Vines can only include music if the user has it playing in the background while filming. Mindie, however, finds the song, cuts it down and loops it for you.

Aside from the music element, there is nothing revolutionary about the new app. You can only access its features if you are willing to allow the app to access your Twitter or Facebook accounts. Mindie is also similar to Vine in regards to how difficult it is to stumble upon videos from those sites. Unless you follow the Twitter feed of someone that “Vines” often, or friends post their videos publicly, it’s hard to just search for Vines.

Many Internet users found ways around this by posting some of the funniest and most popular Vines to YouTube in compilations. Mindie also has this problem, but it’s too early to say if people will go through the effort to pull “Mindies” from the site and upload them somewhere else.

The idea of an app that makes mini music videos is clever, but how much of your life can you share within seven seconds? Music videos aren’t exactly a medium that lends itself to brevity. An average song is anywhere from three to four minutes, and a typical music video is at least that long, or longer if the artist is feeling creative.

The shortness of Vine videos works for it, since it is often used for jokes or odd situations that would fall flat if they were dragged out for longer than six seconds. But for a true music video, seven seconds seems too short. The time restricts it to being known only as “Vine with music.”

It is too soon to tell if Mindie is catching on. Its section on the iTunes App Store features only three customer reviews compared to Vine’s 302. But its concept might seem interesting to some.

“I had never heard of this app before,” said Sean Jalbert, a junior theater major. “As someone who is an 80-year-old man when it comes to social media, I personally wouldn’t download this app. However, it does sound appealing, and I can certainly see it catching on.”

Nia Prater can be reached at nia.prater@temple.edu.

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