Instagram Has A Cool New Trick Up Its Sleeve

If you love making fun, creative videos for your Instagram, you'll love the new app from Instagram, Boomerang, which allows you to create a unique type of image. It's not exactly a photo, video or GIF; somehow, it's more like a combination of all three. In a press release, Instagram itself called Boomerang "a new video app that lets you turn everyday moments into something fun and unexpected" — and that's pretty much exactly what it is: Fun!

The app works by first taking a series of five photos, then putting them together into a one-second video that you can play both backwards and forward (you know, to make unique moments even more memorable). The idea is that you could capture a moment like someone jumping off of a diving board or a friend blowing out their birthday candles in and actually see the action play back as if it were happening in slow-motion right in front of you.

Boomerang will automatically save your new and improved videos onto your camera roll, so there's no need to download them afterwards. You can also share the photos to social media (including Instagram, of course) with the touch of a button — icons will appear on the screen after you make your video, which you can then use to send that photo to directly to the app of your choice, saving you valuable posting time.

Here's how it works in two simple pictures:

1. Tap to Shoot

2. Save Your Image


It seems that this app is a part of the new direction Instagram is taking in order to boost innovation. Said co-founder Kevin Systrom speaking to TIME a few weeks ago, “For Instagram to succeed in the long run, video has to be a core part of not only what we’re good at, but also what the community produce[s],” he said. “So we’re very focused on video." It seems apps like these will be the way of Instagram's future, so if you're over the moon about Boomerang, there's probably a lot more like it in store.

There are, however, a few drawbacks. Apparently, users are having trouble sharing Boomerang videos via Twitter; howeve, Instagram has also noted that they're trying to resolve this posting issue. "We're hearing reports that people are unable to share Boomerang videos to Twitter from within the Boomerang app. We're looking into what might be causing this issue and hope to have it resolved soon," they wrote on the Instagram Help Center page. In addition, the videos don't and can't include sound, so there's no way to include the audio of your moments into these unique videos.

Boomerang is available for download right now on both the iTunes App Store and Google Play, so anyone with a smartphone can use it, starting right now! I decided to give it a test drive, to see what the videos from the app are really like.

My first attempt was pretty funny. I was trying to look sort of like a doll, but it looks more like my head is falling off instead. Either way, though, it's definitely a really good video to use for a lighthearted LOL:

I love how my second attempt turned out. It looks like the man here is walking both backwards and forwards, giving it a really interesting effect:

I have to say, I think this is pretty cool! If you like to experiment with photography, definitely give Boomerang a try.

Images: Courtesy of Instagram (2); Erin McKelle Fischer/Bustle(2)