Apple today announced a new app called Clips, which it hopes will allow iPhone owners to share videos and photos across social networks, although the company has stopped short of creating its own Instagram or Snapchat competitor.

The app, which will be a free download from the App Store, borrows from other popular video and photo sharing apps and appears to be the result of months of work, some of which has been rumored for just as long.

Opening the app gives users the familiar interface that all of these kinds of apps present. Once video or photos have been taken – or imported for that matter – users have four options to choose from, all doing different things to their content. Live Titles, Filters, Overlays, and Posters, give users plenty to work with, depending on what effect they want to come out at the other end.

Live Titles appear the most unique feature, with the app allowing users to take photos and then use natural language to speak and have Clips turn that voice input into text.

There are a huge number of languages supported immediately, 36 in total, and the effect is one which leaves scrolling text on top of the content similar to that already available via alternatives such as Instagram or Snapchat.

Filters and Overlays speak for themselves, while Posters are text-based full-screen images which can be used to book-end a video or series of photos. This is likely to be used by someone wanting to place their contact details or social media presences after a video, for example. Speaking of videos, clips can be up to 30 minutes long, with the whole post supporting videos of up to an hour in length. This will all depend on where you are posting to though, and as you might expect sharing via iMessage is the preferred solution as far as Apple is concerned.

The Share Sheet is there should you want to push anything to another app or network such as YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Apple may not have launched its own social network for sharing media, but it has given users the tools to do the sharing elsewhere. Whether it will offer anything competitors do not already offer via their own apps remains to be seen, and whether people will see enough value to jump through the extra hoops needed in order to make it all happen. Time will tell, as always.

Clips will be available on the App Store for free in April, and will be compatible with devices running iOS 10.3 or latter.

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