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Turns Your Video Stills into Animations with Vimeo Echograph

In what many are seeing as a bid to take over some of Twitter app Vine‘s newly created video loop market, video company Vimeo has bought up the popular iOS app Echograph. Echograph, in case you’re not familiar with it, it’s different than Twitter’s Vine, it is designed to let people easily create GIFs with details that are animated.

Echograph is a photograph that contains small slices of animation. You start off by selecting a video and then trimming it to 5 seconds. You then pick a single still frame from the clip. From there, you actually paint over an area of that still frame with a moving element from the video, creating an image with touches of animation.

“We chose Echograph because it helps people easily create beautiful high-quality video content,” Vimeo CEO Kerry Trainor said in a statement. “That, with Nick’s proven track record of building innovative video apps, made it a perfect fit for Vimeo.”

Through Vimeo, Echograph users can then share that animated image online. Vimeo has more than 15 million registered users and reaches an audience of more than 93 million each month, according to the company.

The casual micro-video sharing space just got a little more crowded with Vimeo’s acquisition which, I’m sure, will give Vine a good run for its money. Similar to Vine, Echograph is also focused on creating short, animated, looping GIF clips. The popularity of GIF files has grown in the last year and a half as more and more users flock to Tumblr, where GIFs are frequently shared.

Vimeo will now be offering the previously paid Echograph app (which was $2.99) for free via the App Store.