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December 1, 2017

Vine co-founder teases fans with hint at ‘follow-up’ to the looping-video app

by John_A

Remember Vine? The once-popular app let users upload looping six-second videos, some more entertaining than others …

Twitter gave Vine a major boost when it snapped it up in 2012, but at the beginning of 2017 Twitter ended its support, leaving fans with the pared-back Vine Camera and an online repository of Vine videos. And that was pretty much that.

But now one of Vine’s three co-founders has offered hope to its diehard devotees, suggesting that the looping-video app — or at least something like it — could be making a return. Taking to the very service that ended up turning its back on Vine, Dom Hofmann on Thursday tweeted that he’s planning to begin work on “a follow-up to Vine” after receiving lots of encouragement, presumably from former Vine users who still haven’t gotten over the loss of their beloved streaming service.

Hofmann said he intends to fund it himself — perhaps using some of the $30 million Twitter reportedly paid for Vine five years ago, if he has any of it left — but declined to offer any details, saying only that he would reveal more “as it develops.”

i’m going to work on a follow-up to vine. i’ve been feeling it myself for some time and have seen a lot of tweets, dms, etc.

— dom hofmann (@dhof) November 30, 2017

At one stage Vine looked to be going places, gathering 200 million monthly users before Twitter announced it was ending support for the video service as it sought to cut costs and concentrate on its live-streaming offerings.

At the time, another of Vine’s co-founders, Rus Yusupov, voiced his disappointment at Twitter’s decision, warning other fledgling startups: “Don’t sell your company!”

Vine magic?

Whether Hofmann can create some of the Vine magic with his next effort remains to be seen, but other apps produced by the co-founders since Vine’s closure have so far failed to gain much traction, indicating the scale of the challenge that lies ahead.

One of Hofmann’s post-Vine efforts, a social app called Peach, has failed to make any great impact and hasn’t received an update for Android users since July, 2016. Hofmann now heads up Byte, a New York-based startup that’s produced two other apps, Music Maker and Byte, both iOS only. Vine’s other two co-founders, Yusupov and Colin Kroll, launched a live-streaming app à la Periscope called Hype. No new features have been added to the iOS version since February, 2017, and there’s no version for Android.

Still, Vine fans will be crossing their fingers in the hope that Hofmann follows through with a new version of the once-popular video-looping app, or something similar. If Vine somehow passed you by, check out one of our favorite Vine creators who found a niche with his wacky video tricks, or hit the Vine website that remains online and showcases lots of six-second efforts from its heyday.

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