Telly’s iPhone app gets private video sharing

Telly, the San Francisco-based social video aggregation startup formerly known as Twitvid, released version 2.0 of its iPhone app Wednesday. The new app allows users to privately share their video recordings with friends and contacts, regardless of whether these people use Telly or not. The new version also adds some IU tweaks, including a carousel view that recently launched on Telly’s web site as well.

Telly originally launched as a social video curation service some 9 months ago, but CEO Mo Al Adham told me during an interview Monday that sharing of personal videos has always been an important part of Telly’s mobile experience as well. 5.5 percent of Telly’s iOS (s AAPL) users upload at least one video a month to share it with their contacts on Facebook or Twitter, he said.

Telly private video threadThe company now wants to further encourage this kind of sharing by allowing iPhone users to share their clips with select groups of people. Users can either share videos directly with their contacts on the service, or send links to videos via email or text message to anyone in their address book. Recipients who haven’t signed up for Telly yet can then either watch a video on the web, or download the mobile app to participate in a IM-like conversation about the clip.

Telly’s new iPhone app UI also includes a coverflow-like video carousel. Telly Head of Product Mike Cieri told me that this UI has been a big hit ever since the company rolled it out on its website earlier this year. “The results have been staggering,” he said, adding that Telly has seen 30 percent engagement growth with the new UI. iPhone users can access the UI by turning their phone to view it in landscape mode. Turned back into portrait mode, the app will automatically switch to a newsfeed view of videos.

Of course, Telly isn’t the only app that’s trying to facilitate private video sharing. Boxee launched its Cloudee app last summer, and the idea of private sharing of media is pretty much core to Google+, just to name a few. However, Cieri said that the company didn’t see a lot of adoption for any of these services, which is why Telly saw an opportunity to go into this space.

Cieri added that new apps for the iPad and Android (s GOOG) with private video sharing are going to launch in the next couple of months.