If you’re like me, you’ve often wondered why .gif files haven’t enjoyed the same treatment as other audio/visual formats have. While videos and sound files can be easily created with built-in smartphone features and third party apps, there exists little room in the world of social media for the creation and sharing of .gifs (pronounced “jiff,” and anybody who tells you differently is lying).
Despite their slow adaptation to modern methods of communication, .gif files have remained popular. Specifically, websites like tumblr and Reddit have helped them maintain status as the perfect middle ground between static image and full-fledged video (which, let’s face it, we don’t always want to watch). Facebook recently allowed .gif files to work in a very limited way, but this also does nothing to ease in the creation of them. After all, if more people can create animated .gif files, and more platforms allow them to work, more people will share them. The format will increase in popularity even more and become a part of mainstream mass communication.
The problem, up until now, is that to create .gif files, you really need to be at a computer. There are a few smartphone apps which purport to help you create them, but they’re mostly lackluster. Plus, they lack the functionality to take images directly from a smartphone camera.
That may change thanks to Boomerang, a new app from the creators of Instagram. Boomerang allows users to take short photo bursts, which are then converted into an animated .gif file. There’s no news feed like Facebook or Instagram. Instead, the animations are saved directly to your phone’s storage or iPhone’s camera roll. They can then be shared on Instagram, Facebook, or any other platform that allows animated .gif files to be uploaded.
The really cool thing about Boomerang is the looping and reverse features. Instead of a mere short animation, you have the option to loop, reverse, or otherwise tinker with the end result. This provides the ability to create seamlessly looping animations. Get ready for selfies, /r/perfectloops. We’re sorry.
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Author: Timothy Bertrand
Writer and journalist living in the Houston, Texas area. Follow me for breaking news, editorials, pictures of cats doing human activities, and other such content from around the web.