Hands-on: Vine beats Instagram to Windows Phone 8

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Vine sure took its sweet time getting to Windows Phone, but after months of empty promises, the popular video-sharing app has finally arrived.

Vine beat Instagram out of the Windows Phone gate, though the platform obviously wasn’t top priority for either app. To make up for the slight, Vine added a few features that take advantage of the Windows Phone platform: You can pin Vine accounts to your home screen and pivot between Vine and other apps.

Vine has a slightly different look on Windows Phone, but same basic functionality.

In a hands-on test drive of Vine on an HTC Windows Phone 8X, the app performed pretty much the same as it does on Android and iOS—same basic look, same features. The WP8 version of Vine has tabbed icons on a black menu bar that let you swipe between home, new followers, channels, and your profile. I prefer the sea green of Vine’s iOS menu bar, but hey, I’m picky like that.

One nifty Windows Phone feature that iOS and Android don’t have is easier access to Vine. The app taps into WP8’s lenses capability, which lets you turn on a lens within the Camera app. Just choose Vine from your lens options and you can shoot videos from your Camera without even opening the Vine app.

Windows Phone users otherwise have the same basic experience that their iOS and Android cohorts have, though Vine’s most recent update for its favored platforms includes features that the WP8 version lacks, like the Time Travel and Sessions editing tools.

Still, it’s a baby step forward for Windows Phone, which is playing catch-up to the more established mobile platforms.

Nokia first let word of Vine for Windows Phone out of the bag in July, when the phone maker launched the Lumia 1020. Nokia continued to hype the arrivals of Vine and Instagram when it announced the Lumia 1520 and Lumia 2520 tablet last month. Windows Phone users will have to sit tight for Instagram—no word yet on when the app is expected to hit the Windows Store.

This story, "Hands-on: Vine beats Instagram to Windows Phone 8" was originally published by TechHive.

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