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One97 Incubates VideoPind, An Online Video Curation App; Review

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VideoPind, a company incubated by One97 Communications, has released a video curation app by the same name for iPhone, iPad and Android devices. This follows One97’s recent investment in Dexetra, a mobile solutions company that had launched Iris, a highly personalized and intelligent answering engine for Android phones. The details of the funding have not been disclosed.

The VideoPind app lets users browse through a set of curated videos through what it claims to be an ‘innovative touch gesture’, across various categories, in addition to offering the ability to search for and create new categories on the basis of a user’s search keywords. It also allows users to save videos as Favourites for later viewing, add their YouTube subscriptions and followings as a channel and share content via Facebook, Twitter, Email and Mobile SMS. The app is available as a free download across respective app stores.

 

Review:

The app has a simple interface with video thumbnails in a 4X4 (Landscape mode) or 3X4 (Portrait mode) interface. There is a detailed help section to guide users, since the app does not feature many navigation controls. The user needs to press a video thumbnail, and swipe vertically to switch across various pre-loaded categories or horizontally to browse videos within a category channel. The user can also hold a thumbnail and swipe a little horizontally or vertically to see all the videos scrolling automatically. If one uses more than one finger, the categories are displayed in large font.

To be honest we were not aware about the navigation till we referred to the help section. There are just three major navigation buttons and a search box, and even these can be hidden for a full screen browsing experience.

 

The app comes with some Video Channels including TED Talks, Science and Technology, Short Films, Top Hits, Adventure Sports, Coke Studio, Bollywood Top, Animated Short Film and Documentary. Users can search for more videos and add the search key-word to create custom Video Channels.

Users can mark videos as Favourites within the app and save them for watching at a later time. They can also log into their YouTube account and add subscriptions and ‘followings’ as channels.

 

In the landscape mode, the app offers Related and other videos from the same channel with the playback screen. Users can also log onto their social network accounts in the app to share videos across Twitter and Facebook, in addition to e-mail and SMS. We were successfully able to share a video via SMS with an Airtel number.

The highlight of the app is its clean, minimalistic user interface and unusual navigation, and its ability to fetch a large number of videos for a given keyword.

Suggestions:

– We were expecting the app to be similar to Showyou, a Flipboard like app for videos that lets users sign into their social network accounts and fetch videos shared or viewed by their Twitter or Facebook connections.  So perhaps it can also add the same functionality to offer personalised videos.

– It could also offer a ‘watch it later’ option for videos that users come across on the web through a bookmarklet or a custom e-mail address.

*Disclosure: One97 Communications is an advertiser with MediaNama

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