Today, Instagram is rolling out Hyperlapse: the first external application the company has launched, according to a company blog post.
As Wired's Cliff Kuang reported, the new app essentially crams the camera stabilizing and tracking powers of a movie studio into a cell phone using the iPhone's built-in gyroscope.
The technology used to create the app builds on the video stabilizing technology that Instagram bought along with its 2013 acquisition of Luma, a video firm started by Stanford graduate Alex Karpenko.
Karpenko and Thomas Dimson, a fellow Instagram employee and the brains behind Hyperlapse, used the built-in gyroscope to further develop the original technology in a way that allows users to stabilize and change the speed of time-lapse video they shoot with their phones. According to the description in the iTunes app store, users can create "cinematic quality" time-lapse videos without worrying about restricting their movement to prevent a shakiness.
The app, as it stands, has a fairly basic interface. Users have two options: to record video and then to change the speed of the video to up to 12 times its original speed. Users can then share it to either Facebook or Instagram.
Android users are out of luck, though. Developing an Android version of the app would require changes to both the camera and gyroscope of the phones, so Instagram has yet to start working on that.
So far, the demos are impressive and the prospect of editing a video beyond changing the filter or length is certainly exciting.
As for why the company chose to develop it as a standalone application, a spokesperson told Recode that this way users can create videos up to four minutes long whereas Instagram only supports at most 15-second-long videos.