Instagram launches ‘Boomerang’ video app: What is it and how does it work?

The team behind Instagram has developed apps like Hyperlapse, which lets you film and share timelapse videos, and Layout, which hooks into Instagram, enabling you to make collages from your photos. And now that same team has announced a new app called Boomerang. It lets you capture GIF-like videos.

Here’s everything we know so far about Boomerang…

Well, an actual “Boomerang” is a curved, flat toy, which can be thrown and automatically returned to the thrower. Instagram’s take on Boomerang is a mini video that plays forward and backward. Get it?

The Boomerang app takes bursts of photos and then stitches them together into a HD video loop. The loop starts to play forward but then plays backward, creating a neat, GIF-like video. Boomerang videos do not include audio.

Instagram recommends that you find something that’s moving, then record it while holding still, and voila! From there, you can share it on Instagram. Boomerang also automatically saves the video to your camera roll.

  • Download Boomerang (for iOS or Android only) – it’s free!
  • A full-screen viewfinder will immediately load once you open the app, with a simple record button at the bottom-center and a camera-flipper button next to that.
  • Switch the camera to whichever way you prefer (like selfie mode or facing outward), and then tap the record button at the bottom when you’re ready to capture your Boomerang. Keep in mind you should only film something that’s moving to ensure your Boomerang works out in the end.
  • The app will then take bursts of photos, then show you a preview of your final Boomerang when finished, and it’ll even automatically save the Boomerang to your camera roll.
  • At the end, you will see options to share the Boomerang to your Instagram, Facebook, and other apps available in your phone’s share sheet.
  • Once your done, tap the “Done” button in the top-right, and then the viewfinder will pop back up, making it easier for you to quickly take and share another Boomerang.

Boomerang videos are automatically saved to your camera roll. So, to view your Boomerangs, go to your phone’s camera roll. Currently, there’s no way to view or “like” a friend’s Boomerang, as there’s no social aspect to the Boomerang app. It’s a just dead-simple app designed to create and share quick videos.

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