The Gifture app adds animation to a series of photos. (Gifture )
If Instagram is a little too static for you, Gifture brings action to your social snapshots.
The free iPhone app lets you turn a series of photos into a singular animated image, or a GIF. They tell a different kind of story from the still images of Instagram, but in nearly the same interface -- and yes, with a similar set of filters.
What we like about this app is how easy it is to use. You snap some shots in real time or add a series of photos from your camera roll, put them in a desired order, add a filter -- or be a rebel and let it go au naturel -- adjust the how quickly the image shifts between frames, write a caption, then send it off into the digital world. You can share it on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr as well as within the Gifture universe.
Gifture works on iPhone from 3GS to 4S and on the iPod Touch and lets you zoom images if you want to get a closer look.
One of the downsides is that the feed is just like Instagram's. And, depending on your perspective, there's a preponderance of hot young women posing, making it feel a bit like a different sort of less family-friendly app.
The real disappointment is that, when you post to Facebook, it's merely a link and not the actual GIF.
Another similar free iPhone app, Cinemagram, turned video into a "cinemagraph" -- or a still image with an isolated area of motion. We're enjoying the challenge of getting the movement to look more natural, like many of the stunning images passing through the feed. This one takes a bit more practice and dexterity, particularly when working with dynamic objects like a face. Stationary horizons are much easier to work with.
Some of the results really are stunning. But don't go looking for it in the App Store right now. It has disappeared, and the feed hasn't updated in a day.
Apparently, its servers are down, according to its Twitter feed. "Don't be sad. Our servers are down but we'll be back again in a few hrs tops." That was on May 14.
[Updated, 8:41 a.m. May 17: Last month, an email purportedly from Nikoo Asadi, a community manager for Cinemagram's developer, Factyle, responded to a user's email saying that an Android version was in the works. Asadi responded to our query about the iOS app, saying, "Cinemagram is presently being fine-tuned and will soon be available for downloading at all iTunes stores globally." There's no specific word on when that was likely to be.]
Sure, these fast-filtered photographs are a bit like auto-tuned music, but they still play. It's actually fun to do something a little different with the hundreds of photos piling up in the phone's camera roll.
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Photos get animated with Gifture, Cinemagram apps