If you want to make a cool, professional looking, smooth timelapse video, you could spend lots of time and $$$ on gear or if you have an iPhone, you can just download an app. This morning, the people behind that little app, Instagram, released ‘Hyperlapse,’ a standalone app that makes it super easy to smooth out your shaky tracking shots or create timelapse/hyperlapse videos without the encumbrance of a pricy rig or heavy equipment.

Using some image stabilization algorithms, the phone’s gyroscope to stabilize the footage and magic fairy dust (or something like that), the very simple to use interface has one button you press to record.  After your masterpiece is complete (it will allow you to record up to 45 minutes of footage), choose the speed on the slider, between 1x and 12x, then share your video with the world or save it so you can submit it to the Academy for next year’s Oscar consideration.

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For those that have shaky hands and questionable balance (like me), Hyperlapse will produce a fairly steady video. You can adjust the exposure with a tap and in seconds, have a smooth, cinematic masterpiece.


I wanted to see if someone with no cinematic skills could use this app, so I woke up my puppy and bribed her with treats to come downstairs with me for a quick demo. Running backwards and upstairs, the Hyperlapse app made my little video look like I took more than the 40 seconds I actually spent shaking a bag of treats and running through the yard while my neighbors looked on. It was then uploaded to Facebook with one press of a button. Total time spent: 1 minute 10 seconds.

For now, the app is only available for iPhone 4 and up. Instagram hopes to make the app Android friendly soon, but that requires some changes to the phone’s API and gyroscope.

The app isn’t perfect, of course, and will not replace a $15k setup for a quality cinematic feature, but I can’t wait to see the cinema magic you creatives out there will be making with this new toy.

To download the app, head over to the iTunes store. Read more about the inspiration behind Hyperlapse on WIRED here.