Facebook owned Instagram have unveiled a new video sharing tool at a press conference last night (June 20).

It is hoped the new feature will put the app in direct competition with the Twitter backed Vine video app, feeding off the popularity of so-called snackable videos.

Last week the firm sent out a number of invitations to tech press and media experts, which simply read “A small team has been working on a big idea.”

Until the conference yesterday however, the social networking giant remained tight-lipped as to what the new product would be, and it was down to Instagram CEO, Kevin Systrom to make the big reveal at Facebook’s Menlo Park headquarters.

In a blog post accompanying the announcement, he wrote: ” Over the past two and a half years, Instagram has become a community where you can capture and share the world’s moments simply and beautifully

“Some moments, however, need more than a static image to come to life.”

As well as appealing to mobile users, the new feature on the popular app may also appeal to firms looking at mobile advertising in the future, offering an alternative visual avenue for their marketing messages.

The changes to Instagram marks the first real overhaul of the app since Facebook acquired the company for $1bn more than a year ago.

Its rival video sharing app, Vine, has proven to be particularly popular since Twitter acquired it in October last year, with 13 million people now using the platform. As Instagram users have a pre-established fan base however, it hopes to tap into the 130 million users already in place to better effect.

Facebook previously used a similarly cryptic message to invite press to a conference in January, using an invite which simply read  ‘come and see what we are building’.

On that occasion, the big unveil turned out to be Facebook’s spanking new Graph Search Engine – rather than a much rumoured Facebook phone (something, which was unveiled at a later date but shelved indefinitely on UK stores due to poor sales across the pond).

The January conference was the first such event the Internet firm had held in over a year, but as it continues to tackle criticism from Wall Street and shareholders, it appears Facebook now really has the bit stuck between its teeth.

Internet Marketing News from ClickThrough – an integrated digital marketing agency offering web design services, web development, SEO, PPC, content, online PR and conversion optimisation.

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About the author:

Martin Boonham is an online copywriter for ClickThrough Marketing, he has worked there since October 2012. He has a Masters in Print Journalism from Nottingham Trent University, where he also gained his NCTJ qualification at the same time; achieving qualifications in subbing, shorthand and media law.