Clips

App Review – Clips


Threat Level – Very Low

The app Clips is Apples newest app available on the App Store. Clips app basically is named after the word Video Clips because that is literally all you do with it. Edit videos. 

In the world of Snapchat, FB messenger and other social media outlets where pictures and videos are being shared, I feel Apple needed to be involved without taking on the social media side to those apps. So out of no where the Clips app launched. I was kind of confused at first because Apple already has an app called iMovie that allows just about any editing option for pictures and video that can be offered but then I understood what they were going for which I’ll explain shortly. 

The Clips app was the first app I have seen that requires you to be on the newest version of IOS 10.3.1. When I went to download the app, a prompt immediately popped up that did not allow me to download the app without updating to newest IOS. Let’s be honest with ourselves for a minute. How many times do you click the later button as your phone asks you to update, even though they’re security updates. So the skinny on this newest Apple app is if you want Clips, you must update. Once the update is installed and you are ready to launch Clips, you will see a pretty basic, simple to use interface attached to a video editing app. Clips allows you to take videos or select videos to throw some editing towards. Add captions? Sure .. Add stickers? sure. Would you like to use live dictation to put text over top of your videos? You can do that too. 

So now to the rating and should you let your children use Clips app. I have it a very low threat level because that is my lowest rating. This app doesn’t have any features that is going to jeopardize safety or security of device and is really easy to use. This app allows only local editing and the share features have to be shared in other apps. So basically this app is just an editing app for your videos and once your done you can save away to your device to pull up in other apps. The export video after edit is your normal selections, device, camera iCloud Drive etc. In a long list of picture editing apps, this is Apples answer to video editing with no new social media ties. 

Description Keywords – blue, apple, video, camera, blue camera, video editing, edit, video, blue and white, blue, light blue

You Now

App Review – You Now

Threat Level – Very High

YouNow is an app developed by a company named YouNow incorporated and launched back in spring of 2016. This app is available on all the major mobile markets and is free download. This app does however have subscription service for 4.99 a month that can be billed directly to your iTunes account and iTunes subscriptions. The paid service unlocks other features and let’s you connect and find more people to live broadcast yourself with along with adding stickers, more chat features and access to broadcasters replays. 


You now could be described as a mix between you tube and going Facebook Live. This app let’s you create an account with an email address, and go live by streaming whatever you are doing via your devices camera. They advertise this app as a way to express yourself and share with others your artistic side such as singing or broadcasting what you are currently doing. You can also search for others who are currently broadcasting live, and with a active subscription view replays of their live broadcasts. Once inside one of these live views streaming, you may comment on videos and read others comments or participate in a live chat with the creators of the live stream and their viewers. You can also select the people you enjoy following the most. You can also be notified when they go live. Or replay the videos they have streamed and created in the past. 


With a lot of streaming service features being added to social networks like Facebook and Periscope (owned by twitter) you are going to start seeing more and more of this kind of content. Live streaming is dangerous for kids for two reasons. One, being live if they make a mistake and say something or do something, there is no way to get it back or have removed. The content has already been shared. Also from the viewing side of the app, I have already found from researching the app that some content with strong language or very edgy content that I would not want my children to be viewing. 


A lot of kids want to be seen or be the popular one and stand out in their circle of friends. Make sure they are not doing this at the expense of their own safety or putting content out that parents would not approve just to be “popular” or to go “viral”. Live streaming features will continue to grow inside apps that are already out as well as new ones on the horizon. Be aware of this trend. 

App Description – green, now, white letters, now, like, like green, green with white, green white, green and white

Live.Me


App Review – Live Me

Threat Level – High


Live me is an app developed by KS mobile Inc. It appears from a quick search, this company has been involved with a handful of applications for iPhone and android devices. Their library consists of anything from picture collage editing apps to live video streaming apps. It appears they took a jab at the photo sharing app. Live me however being the one app it appears they have put the most time into for all the features available. 


Live me advertises itself as the number 1 way to watch live streaming videos with video chat. With the growth of the app by Twitter called Periscope and also Facebook live video status updates, now is the time to get on the mainstream media train when it comes to live streaming apps. People are wanting to stream their content live instead of posting videos or still images. We started seeing a turn when it comes to broadcasting where a lot of tv reports are now streaming all their media live on several different streaming platforms. 
As for Live me, it appears from the advertisements attempting to market to younger adults but it does have a 17 plus rating in the description of app in App Store. It says the plus 17 rating is for infrequently crude humor, mild profanity and mild sexual content. Also mature, suggestive scenes. I realize this is a generic description in the app comments on why it is a plus 17 rating, so remember this if a child tries to download this app to their device. 


This app after download has a lot of the familiar looks of other social media apps. Once an account is made and profile set with email address, you are ready to stream yourself live over the app. The style looks and has the feel of an Instagram or other photo sharing style apps. You can follow other people and be notified when they start a live stream. Once a live stream is started you can hear and see whatever they are streaming and are able to make comments, and share stickers at the bottom of the screen. They advertise pretty hard the fact that they want this to be the number streaming app for celebrities by advertising ‘Connect with the top stars and become the next big viral celebrity yourself’. The app also allows you to send hearts as people are streaming and also allows you to send comments that appear to float off your screen in attempt to get viewers of streamers attention. So basically this app is a mix of the more popular live streaming services in Facebook and Periscope. You can also search hashtags for different topics and search for more than 500,000 ways to explore the users. You can see who follows them or find new people to follow based off other users preferences. 


I gave this app a high threat level due to the app being able to love stream content. At the time of my download and review however I did not see any pornographic or x rated content from users. I am assuming the company puts filters on this type of content and monitors it closely. This app is however intended for adult use but with the growth of this style of live steaming style apps, I encourage you as parents to make sure what your children are streaming and why. You can look at your child’s account inside live.me either by following them with an account of your own or by seeing on their device they intend to stream from. Most importantly for this app or any live streaming app, monitor who they are following or who is following them.  As with anything live, you never know who might be on the other side of this app viewing. Remind your kids that once they put something out on an app or the internet, it is gone forever. People could use that against them. Stay safe with this one. Adults only for any live streaming content or monitored at every use by a parent. 

App description – star, purple, pink, tourquiose, purple star, pink star, purple and pink star, live, live streaming

Rabbit

 
App Review – Rabbit

Threat Level – Moderate 

Rabbit is described as the next generation conferencing app. The idea all began back in February of 2013 with an app for the Mac. A year later they launched their website and included the web based client. By 2015, Rabbit was being noticed and became one of the top video conferencing app while beginning to create their mobile app for phones and tablets. In October of 2015 the app went live on the Apple App Store and continues to pick up momentum. 

So what is Rabbit?
Rabbit is a chat room / video conferencing app that allows its users to share a website in their chat screen so that they can shop together or watch videos such as you tube or Netflix and basically any other website. It is a way to chat and share with the other person while you both viewing the same website in your chat room. Rabbit describes itself as a great way to hang out and watch a movie with your long distance partner. So how does this work? You could basically describe this as a texting app similar to KIK, wechat, or whatsapp with a web browser at the top of your screen. So there is chat room at the bottom and web browser at the top of your screen. It allows chatting while watching whatever is in the web browser at top of screen. You can share your “Rabbitcast” with a quick copy of a link and send to others. 

Once you download Rabbit, it requires you to created an account. Like most apps now you can either use your Facebook account to login or create a username and password with your email address. Once you fill out for login, or click login with Facebook then you are ready to invite others to chat. In my opinion, this app would be great if there was a long distance relationship and you wanted to watch a Netflix series together while chatting about it. As for your children, you would need to monitor the sharing very close. One thing I did notice, Rabbit does not filter adult sites. So anything that has a website can be shared and chatted about in chat room at the same time for multiple chatters to view.

I gave this app a moderate threat level due to the app being able to access any website to share. Monitor this one closely and ask your children what they are sharing while chatting if you allow them to use this app. 

App description – bunny, rabbit, orange, white, white rabbit, white bunny 

VSCO

  

App review- VSCO

Threat Level- Moderate
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VSCO is an app developed by a company called Visual Supply Company. It appears this is the only app they currently have running actively on the Apple IOS App Store and Google Play store. They describe their self named app VSCO as the standard of mobile photography. So you are probably asking yourself, what is a picture editing app doing on a social media app review site. Let me explain.

Sometimes apps you find on your child’s devices will be photo or video editing apps. Kids love adding filters to their photos, effects or stickers to their photos before posting them to their favorite social media apps such as Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. We have seen over the years with Instagram and Snapchat the addition of filters inside the app so that the user does not need to use other apps on their phone to add or change the photo such as VSCO offers. This is a popular trend. However we cannot forget about those stand alone apps such as VSCO that have social ties to them. There are other popular photo sharing sites or apps such as photobucket and Imgur, but they offer storage for pics more than many editing features. 

VSCO is a free app available on mobile markets that takes photo editing and storage to the next level. You can identify apps that have social ties versus the ones that don’t usually by the need to create an account when you first launch them. As you will see in VSCO, you are encouraged to login before you use editing features. The wording of this app to encourage an account when you first open it states- 

‘Create and publish your grid, journal and collection- find and follow other creatives in our community.’

This login process that is encouraged and sometimes required on some apps is because they want to give you a great photo editing experience, but want you to save your account online for other people to view. They offer free storage for these photos, but your children need to make sure these pictures are not shared as public. The features inside the app allow for excellent photo editing, exploring other photo editors and the ability to share and follow other people that use VSCO, just make sure they are not sharing public photos of themselves if you find the app on your child’s device. 
Each VSCO account has a link to the users page where all their photos can be shared and viewed. You will see sometimes on Twitter profiles or Instagram profiles a link to the users VSCO account. You will recognize it as a link similar to this 

VSCO.co/aayarnell 

Of course this is not an my actual VSCO account, but an example of what you will see in users social media profiles linking their VSCO account. I have seen Instagram accounts where the user has done great job on locking their account down to only friends being approved being able to see their photos and then having a link to their VSCO account on their profile page being wide open with hundreds of public pictures just a click away without any approvals. This is what you must watch for and look at on your child’s account. 

I gave this app a moderate threat level due to the social ties of this app. Make sure your child’s VSCO account is not wide open for anyone to pull their photos online. All you have to do is pull up their VSCO account online or follow their link if they have one in their other social media profile pages to see if you can openly view their photos. Openly discuss this app with them and make sure they understand what photos they are sharing and how they are doing it before they get to involved with using this photo editing, social media app. This is a great app for editing, but make sure the social side of sharing is locked. I have seen on several accounts, the user not knowing the account is locked down and it being an innocent error, but innocent errors could lead to your child’s pics being open on the Internet. We do not want our children’s pictures shared publicly. 

App description – white, white app with black lines, graph, black squiggly marks, atom, black lines white background

Periscope

App Review – Periscope

Threat Level – Very High

Periscope is an app available on the mobile market for Android and Apple devices. Periscope was launched in January 2015  as start up company that had originally named the app Bounty. Twitter then purchased the app Bounty and renamed Periscope.  Rumors had the acquisition at over 50 million. On August 12, 2015, Periscope released their subscriber and user base at over 10 million accounts. They also noted over 40 years of video was being watched per day!

So now for the what in the world is Periscope section of my review. Periscope is an app that utilizes you twitter account for login and then allows you to view or broadcast live videos from across its app platform. When you first launch the app, it does require access to your Twitter account. If you do not have one, you can make one from inside the app in just a few steps. this is important to remember because if you are going to let your children use the Periscope app, they now will be introduced to Twitter and will need a Twitter login for Periscope.

Once you log in, the interface is pretty easy and self explanatory. There is a map at the top of screen and then trending broadcast in the middle of the people you have selected to follow. The options at the bottom are pretty easy to figure out. The four icons at the bottom of app home screen are displayed as icons.   You are already on the first one (icon is TV with rabbit ears) This just shows you who you are following and quick access to their broadcasts with a map on top of locations of broadcasts.

The next icon is a map (icon is a picture of earth) of North and South America that shows you red dots of where people are currently live broadcasting from. You will see numbers inside the red dots that tell you how many broadcasts are currently in that area. Once you zoom in, then the dots will start to spread out to allow you to view individual ones. I did notice on setup, the app wants your location so it can show you live broadcasts that are around you.

The Third icon is for your own broadcast. When you select this, you will get a menu that you must allow the app to use your camera, microphone and location. This is obviously for the ability to record your streaming video with audio, and to give people your location so that others can watch your broadcast around you.

The last icon is the People page (icon is 3 people silhouetted) This is the page that will show you all your followers or who you are following. Since it uses your Twitter account, you will automatically see others that you are following on twitter or who are following you. It shows you a brief bio, then gives you a plus to add them to your periscope following (That is if they are broadcasting)

On viewing another broadcast after you search for one to watch, you are able to see a live video feed of the person streaming their broadcast. When I downloaded the app and began to use it last night, there was a hurricane coming through Mexico. There were a lot of people live broadcasting the storm and talking about it. While you are watching the live streams of other people, you are able to comment to communicate back and forth with them, and also touch your screen to give them likes. When you like them, hearts will float off the top of page. You will see others doing the same thing and the hearts will float up off the top of screen.

We knew this day was coming with streaming videos and broadcasting live. With growing internet speeds and the popularity of Instagram and Snapchat, someone was going to take on the live feed. I gave this app high threat level and not a very high. Obviously it is going to have to at least get a high level due to the fact that you do not know what the other person is going to say or suggest on. Periscope/Twitter does a pretty good job of removing or banning inappropriate feeds it appears from the other forums I have read about this app while studying for my review. But, they cannot always bump something immediately. While I was watching different feeds, I didn’t stumble across anything that was visually inappropriate, but some people were using harsh language and some sketchy topics they were discussing that i probably would not want my kids watching. This app will have to be monitored close. See who you kids are following and why they are following them. I seen several Video Game review broadcasts from searching the net and other Technology base broadcast. I also seen broadcasts where people were just sitting in their living room, just trying to chat with people.

If you are going to let your child use Periscope, I would suggest to monitor them while using and explain to them the dangers that are obviously behind live broadcasts. This is probably not an app I would want my kid using behind closed doors, due to not knowing who they are watching and chatting with live. I did not find any credible articles of criminal offenses occurring because of this app, but you will need to Monitor them closely with Periscope. There were several sexual related streams online when I reviewed. 
Periscope, Twitter, Video app, broadcast, live, live broadcast, map icon, blue with white and red dot, blue, white, red dot, gps, map icon, map, maps,

Glide

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Glide

Threat Level – High

Glide is a social media app that advertises it’s message as “why send text messages, when you can send videos”. This app is available for download on the mobile market for free and acts as a video messaging service. A video message can be sent up to 90 seconds long.

Once you download the app, you create a user account with basic information for identification and an email. Once you complete this easy process, it is then time to start collecting friends PIN numbers to send them messages.

This app allows you to record a message in a short video form (90 seconds) and then send to your approved Glide friends. Both parties (the sender and person receiving must have Glide accounts) If they are available then they can see the video message immediately. If not, the video message waits on the user to log back into the app to show them their received video message. The video message is saved on Glides cloud service which in turn does not take up any space on your phone. It also allows for group video sharing for multiple friends and also unlimited amount of video chats you can send and receive. It also allows for posting of videos to other social media sites and lets you review old messages you have received in the past.

Glide also has some built in selectable filters to assist in filtering or editing the videos themselves from inside the app.

This app should be monitored closely by parents if their kids are using. Make sure to regularly check to see who their friends are inside this app to keep them from sending or receiving any inappropriate video chats.

Blue app, blue, white g, g, big G, white and blue G