Category Archives: Media

Early Vine Use Sees Video App Rising On iOS While Cinemagram, Viddy, Socialcam All Decline


Call it a fad, call it the Twitter effect, or call it another example of when it pays not to be the first mover, but it looks like two months out of the gate, Twitter’s short-form video-sharing app Vine is picking up users like they’re going out of style.

According to figures from Onavo Insights, which tracks usage of apps across iOS devices in the U.S., since going live in January, Vine has grown its monthly active users by 50% in the last month, and it was used on 2.66% of all iOS devices in the U.S. by the end of February.

It doesn’t look like Vine’s rising tide is lifting all boats. Three other video-sharing apps on iOS — Cinemagram, SocialCam and Viddy — have at the same time declined, with their monthly active users in general down since December. February saw U.S. device usage of 1.07% for Cinemagram, 0.50% for SocialCam and 0.31% for Viddy.

These numbers are somewhat comparable with those of another analytics company, RJ Metrics, which measured Vine use compared to Viddy and Socialcam on Twitter itself. It found that in its first month, Vine was used by 2.8% of Twitter’s highly active users with Viddy used by 0.5% and Socialcam by 0.2%.

While Onavo doesn’t have comparative stats for how well those three apps did in their first couple of months of usage (it wasn’t tracking this data back then), it notes that in fact Vine is bigger now than any one of them has been in the last six months. Viddy and SocialCam have both been in a general decline, while Cinemagram saw a decent boost in the autumn of last year, only to also begin declining in December.

Vine’s rise is interesting in the context of another social network’s launch of a picture-based app. Facebook’s debut of Poke, the ephemeral picture messaging app that was seen as Facebook’s answer to Snapchat, got a lot of attention when it first arrived, but that appeared to quickly disappear when it came to picking up active users. As Poke interest has died down, Snapchat has continued to grow. Today, they stand at 12% for Snapchat and 0.25% for Facebook’s Poke.

One possible message here is that you may have a better chance of succeeding if you’re entering a market that is not yet owned by any one company, regardless of whether you are launching off the back of a wildly popular social media platform or not. Vine was entering a space where its closest competitor was being used by only 1.3% of iPhone owners and falling. Snapchat, by comparison, was being used by 10% and rising when Poke decided to Poke it. In general, video on mobile is still a wide-open space, with video apps used only by about 4% of highly active users on Twitter, according to RJMetrics.

It’s telling that when Twitter launched photo filters, it chose to do them in Twitter itself rather than as a separate service. On the competitive landscape, Instagram, Onavo tells me, is used by 32.3% of iPhone owners in the U.S. on a monthly basis.

Coming up, it will be interesting to see how this plays out with usage, and rollout, of a reported launch of a Twitter music app up ahead. The most used music app on iOS in the U.S., Onavo says, is Pandora at 31.8% of U.S. users accessing it monthly, with Spotify at 7.14%.

CBS Brings Ad-Sponsored Streaming TV To iPhone And iPad; Social Integration, Android & Windows 8 Support Still To Come


CBS is today introducing a new iOS application for iPad and iPhone, which brings its television programming to mobile devices, offering full episodes for streaming a week after they originally air. Shows that air daily, including daytime and late-night programs, will be available 24 hours after airing, the network says.

The company also adds that it plans to expand this application to support both the Android and Windows 8 platforms later this year.

The new app offers many, but not all, of CBS’s top television shows. The company notes that the app will offer NCIS, The Good Wife, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, How I Met Your Mother, The Young and The Restless, The Late Show With David Letterman, Survivor, Elementary, and others. But some of CBS’s leading properties, including The Big Bang Theory and The Mentalist, are not available.

In addition, unlike streaming TV content often found on services like Hulu, Netflix or Amazon Video, for instance, CBS’s app is designed primarily to allow users to catch up on an episode they missed – it’s not offering all the episodes from a current season, or from seasons past.

The app will also offer viewers a social experience, starting with the launch of the Fall TV season later this year. At that time, the company will integrate social feeds, live events where fans can engage with CBS talent directly, and other second-screen experiences specifically for shows like CSI, Criminal Minds, Hawaii Five-O and NCIS: Los Angeles.

Meanwhile, users are able to personalize the app by creating a section of their favorite shows. They can tweet about the show or share to Facebook from the app, as well, or join in discussions with other viewers.

“Our online viewers not only want to watch their favorite shows on multiple devices, they want deeper engagement with the programs they love,” said Jim Lanzone, President of CBS Interactive in a release. “The new CBS App gives them the best of both worlds, letting people watch CBS shows on the best screen available for them, with a host of extra features that give them a richer viewing experience whenever and wherever they tune in.”

Notably, the move also allows for a new way for CBS to generate ad dollars for its content, as the app is offering ad-supported, or “sponsored,” programming. At launch, Buick will be CBS’s first partner on these efforts, whose participation means there will be reduced commercial breaks, as compared with traditional TV for the first several weeks after launch.

“We have been methodically and strategically finding new ways to satiate the appetite for our content on new platforms, while tapping into the tremendous revenue provided by doing so,” said Leslie Moonves, President and CEO of CBS Corporation. “Our announcement today achieves both of these objectives, while protecting our very healthy current ecosystem.”

CBS is the last network to launch some sort of streaming TV experience of its own on mobile devices. ABC has its ABC Player app, NBC has an app, and Fox has Fox Now. They all offer varying degrees of access to their television content, but none provide complete lineups of what the network has to offer.

CBS has been moving to bring its TV content to streaming services in recent months. In November, the company finally signed a deal with Hulu after years of remaining the broadcast holdout on the service. Like this new app, the Hulu deal didn’t include access to some of the network’s most popular shows, like Big Bang Theory, which remains difficult to watch on mobile devices (as is the point, apparently). However, this and many other top shows are available for streaming from the homepage.

The company also signed an expanded deal with Amazon this February, bringing a handful of new properties, including America’s Next Top Model, Everybody Loves Raymond, Jericho, The L Word, Undercover Boss, and United States of Tara to Amazon’s Instant Video platform. Amazon and CBS previously had an agreement that offered users access to some new and much back-catalog content, including things like Star Trek, Frasier, Medium and Cheers. It also struck a minor deal with Yahoo to bring entertainment programming to Yahoo’s online property omg!.