Storehouse is the type of app I like - it has a very low effort to result ratio, that's to say it is simple to use and does it's job with beautiful simplicity, in both function and design.
In short Storehouse is an app for the iOS system that lets you tell visual stories using images, video and text. The company recently won an Apple design award and it's clear why when you see how quickly and easily it can help you to tell the stories of your everyday life and passion. It started on the iPad at the beginning of the year and was released for iPhone a couple of weeks ago.
You create a new story by importing a series of your images and/or video. Then you rearrange the media by using drag/drop and simple resizing tools. As you resize an image, the surrounding ones flip into a layout that makes them all look great together. You can easily adjust the crop and add in text in one of 3 formats: quote, headline or normal.
Other features include:
- Smooth flow scrolling through stories
- Tap an image to view it full-screen, then tap again to return to story
- From within the app, share your individual stories via Facebook, email, Twitter or text message
- Copy web URL to a story
- Stories open in a mobile browser with same elegant layout
- Social connections, with the ability to 'like', reshare and comment on stories
The social aspect of Storehouse allows you to connect with other users and view their stories as they publish them. Stories can be searched by category, free text or #hashtag. You can sign up via Facebook, as with many apps, giving you the immediacy of potential connections, but it doesn't post to your profile unless you tell it to.
Disadvantages and future potential could include:
- Although there is a draft mode for saving a story in progress, you can't publish 'private' stories with a share link
- The web version of a story links directly to your profile and all your other stories
- There aren't many options for adjusting spacing between text or size of text, but this is largely the key to the app's simplicity and producing a consistent, clutter-free layout
- It's free
I find free apps a bit of a risk, particularly if I really like them. If there is no clear path to monetisation, then I worry that they may not be around for the long haul. Sure Stonehouse has generated millions of dollars in investment so far, but where next? What could a 'premium' version add? Or will in-app ads follow?
I had a coffee yesterday morning, took a few images and put together a quick story, which I managed to publish before finishing my drink. It is genuinely easy to throw images together on the move and add some quick text. This included dropping all my images through VSCO Cam before uploading them.
Anyway for now, enjoy that it's free and a great way to quickly share visual stories of your life.
My Storehouse username is dannytucker