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App Friday: Qik, the Twitter of video streaming

3G video calls never took off because video calling is just weird — but what about seeing what someone else is seeing? Enter Qik, a mobile-based service that allows you to stream live video from your phone and share it with friends online.

To use Qik you need to install an app on a compatible phone. We’ve tested it out on a variety of Nokia phones and the iPhone 3GS, but the iPhone 3GS app doesn’t allow you to stream — instead it uploads a video when you’ve finished shooting.

When you start shooting a Qik video it streams it live to your Qik page. You can embed a Qik player on a WordPress blog or set up your Qik account to transfer a video to a variety of other websites, including YouTube.

We asked Ilicco Elia, head of mobile at Reuters and a heavy Qik user, why he liked using Qik. Ilicco said, “It’s great for behind the scenes footage when you’re about to do a live interview, for example, and has excellent integration”. Similar to Twitter, how you use Qik depends on who you are, which is why we love it. You could share a live video of a concert or just share footage of a relative’s birthday, and best of all you can capture the moment as it happens. Download link.