Streamweaver is a nifty collaborative video-making app for the iPhone that would be niftier yet if it worked more consistently.
The central idea is that you and up to three friends—all of whom must be using Streamweaver, too—use the app to invite each other to collaborate on the making of a single video: You record the event at the same time, but from your varying vantage points. Once you’ve recorded about a minute of video, Streamweaver uploads your contribution and stitches it together into a single split-screen movie showing the same event, at the same moment, from multiple views. The effect is similar to the old split-screen montages that would appear on 24 at the end of every episode of that show.
The first time I tested the video, I had the help of a friend who writes for ReadWrite.com—neither of us exactly newbies when it comes to iOS apps. Yet for some reason we were unable to make a video collaboration work. We attempted to invite each other to make a video, and we thought we succeeded. But our videos uploaded separately and never stitched together. (An unexpected result? We both received unsolicited email from Streamweaver’s CEO, explaining the steps we should’ve taken to achieve the collaboration, which were steps we’d already taken.)
A second attempt—this time with my wife at a local coffee shop—succeeded. It may be that the 3G data coverage in the second location was more complete; the videos uploaded and edited together with relative speed. But you’ll have the most success with this application if you’re doing it in a Wi-Fi environment. Once you complete a video, it can be shared via Facebook, Twitter, email, or text.
Streamweaver is a nice way to add some collaborative style to moments you’re already sharing with friends—if you can get it to work properly.