/// New Spin on Video Chats Brings More to the Party

October 2, 2013  |  All Things Digital


[ See post to watch video ] Holding video chats on your mobile devices can be a great thing. But many of the common video chat apps only allow two-party calls, at least for free, or require you to have an account with a large service or social network. Now, there’s a new video-chatting service for mobile devices and it’s free. It allows up to 10 parties in a single chat session and it doesn’t require an account to participate in a chat. This new service, called Spin, also allows you to share photos and videos with others during a chat. And it’s built for touch so you can swipe or flick in and out of chats, which it calls “gatherings.” Or you can pinch and zoom to enlarge the whole gathering, or just the small tile representing an individual in that group. Spin launched Tuesday evening for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. An Android version is in the works for the first quarter of 2014. The app comes from a San Francisco company called Net Power & Light, which produces apps for education. A gathering in action, with participants shown in tiles I’ve been testing Spin in recent days on two iPads and an iPhone, and found it to be a nice way to communicate. It has a dash of whimsy, and good video and audio quality. But Spin is so different from traditional video-chatting apps that it can be a bit confusing at first, something the company says it recognizes and promises to take steps to ameliorate. In one test that included six people on a Saturday, some of us were at home, one was at a sidewalk cafe and one was in a vineyard. Photos and YouTube videos were shared and anyone could flick through the pictures, or advance or reverse the videos, for all to see.

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New Spin on Video Chats Brings More to the Party


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