Storehouse is the photo and video sharing app that several of my iPhone-using friends have been babbling about this year. I wasn’t able to see what they were talking about because, as you may have guessed based on the name of this website, I tend to favor Android, and Storehouse didn’t exist for Android. Now I finally get to see what the fuss is about, because Storehouse is bringing their app to Android.
My iPhone friends have been singing Storehouse’s praises and regaling me with its simplicity and usability. Initially I just disregarded everything they said (because Apple people, am I right?), but after I actually gave the beta a spin and swallowed my condescending superiority, I had to admit that Storehouse has a lot of things going for it.
I was expecting some sort of Instagram clone, but the comparisons between Storehouse and Instagram end at “there are photos in it.” Whereas Instagram is basically like Facebook for your Thai food, Storehouse is a lot more personal. It’s closer to scrapbooking than Facebooking. You don’t broadcast your scrapbook to the world; you make it with love and care to record a specific set of memories. Then you show it to a few specific people who are important in your life.
Storehouse is looking to fill niche that in a pre-social-media time was the standard order of business. Believe me, I’m the first to take up arms against anyone hocking that old “technology is isolating us” static, but there is a sense of always being on stage when it comes to social media. Storehouse is moving in a distinctly personal direction that sets aside the trappings of social media in favor of more deliberate storytelling and sharing.
So what exactly is Storehouse? Well, it’s kind of a combination of cloud media storage and collage builder. The interface is fairly intuitive and ‘poppy,’ with pictures and videos in the collage, called a “story,” actively adapting to changes as you make them. For people like me, who have a terrible eye for design, Storehouse does a good job of keeping everything aesthetically separated and locked to a kind of fluid grid. I gave Storehouse a spin on my smartphone, but seems like it would really sing on a tablet, where you have more space for precision adjustments. The beta didn’t have a few features, like “shake to automatically organize,” but I look forward to seeing these go live in the final release.
In addition to arranging your photos nicely, Storehouse keeps them privately stored for you much like Dropbox or Google Photos. That way you’ll still have your memories even if you lose your phone in a tragic washing machine accident (RIP Droid 2).
Once you’ve finished your story you can keep it to yourself or add it to a “space,” which is a themed region where invited friends can all view and contribute to stories. For instance, you might have a “Greg’s Birthday Bash” space where all the attendees to Greg’s carnal sinfest kegger can upload their own photos of the event, keeping Greg’s drunken debauchery well-documented, stylishly organized, and safe from the prying eyes of his boss.
Of course, if you want to go full social media, Storehouse will give you the tools to upload your story to Facebook, embed it in a blog, or send it along via email.
If this sounds like your cup of tea, click the button below to download Storehouse from the Google Play Store.