The latest app to come out of Instagram does only one thing. But it does it well.
Hyperlapse, which the Facebook-owned photo-sharing service revealed in a blog post Tuesday, is a video editor that steadies and speeds up your video recordings in order to make your home videos look like high-quality film productions, imitating the shot you might get from a Steadicam or tracking rig. Wired called it “a $15,000 video setup in your hand.”
The app works simply: You start recording, finish, and share your video with the click of three melodic buttons. On the editing screen, the only option for adjusting your Hyperlapse, as the recording is called, is to choose a playback speed between 1x and 12x the actual speed.
Why isn’t this just a feature of the Instagram app? One answer is that Instagram is already getting overwhelmed with features. A private-messaging option, Instagram Direct, doesn’t appear to have threatened messaging apps like Snapchat. A June update brought an extensive professional photography suite to Instagram—though Instagram won’t say how many users bother to use them.
Next to the jam-packed primary app, Hyperlapse looks positively sleek.
In order to use Hyperlapse, you don’t even need an Instagram account—once you download it, you just give it permission to access your camera and microphone, and you’re ready to go. (Nagging question: If it needs access to my mic, how come my videos don’t have sound?)
For now, you need an iPhone or other Apple mobile device to use it, as the app is only available in the Apple App Store so far.
Here ReadWrite’s mascot pup, Ramona, models for a Hyperlapse. To get the full effect, we recommend viewing it while Yakety Sax plays in the background.
Screenshot via Instagram’s Hyperlapse video