5 free sites to discover animated GIFs

anime gif
anime gif

Last updated: July 27, 2023

Created in 1987, the format animated GIF is a means of image compression. It has two major characteristics:

First, it limits its palette to 256 colors. Second, this format encodes multiple images into a single file. This creates the animation effect so beloved on the web.

Although competed by the video format, the animated GIF has a devoted audience. Unlike video files, Animated GIFs are remarkably easy to handle. In addition, their limitation in colors makes them particularly light. This facilitates the rapid creation of short, often very viral, animations.

The technical constraints of the animated GIF intimately link it to early web culture. Love these files to brighten up your online posts? Here is five sites where you can find the craziest animated GIFs.

Giphy

Launched in 2013, Giphy positions itself as the Google of animated GIFs. It is also the first choice for search for GIFs.

Every day, more than a billion downloads are done from Giphy. Initially designed as a search engine, it quickly incorporated a database of animated GIFs.

Giphy has managed to find a place on the majority of social networks. It is therefore easy to use an animated GIF hosted on Giphy. All it takes is a short link on Twitter, Facebook, Messenger and others.

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Tenor

Originally named Riffsy, Tenor was born in 2014. He poses as Giphy's main rival.

Tenor, a search engine Animated GIFs, records 12 billion monthly requests. Like Giphy, Tenor has developed partnerships. These agreements provide it with a presence on major messaging and social media platforms.

Additionally, Tenor offers the mobile app GIF Keyboard, available on Android et iOS. This makes it easy to integrate a Tenor animated GIF into any mobile app. Google bought the Tenor site in 2018.

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Gfycat

Founded in 2015, Gfycat is a multi-dimensional hosting platform. It offers animated GIFs, as well as short videos, compatible with the recent HTML5 format.

The site offers an innovative and more complete service thanks to its interface for creating animated GIFs on the cloud. This creation interface is easy to use and allows users to create their own animations.

Gfycat is not limited to a simple hosting site, it has become a real social network around GIFs. Indeed, with an impressive number of 130 million active users per month, Gfycat has managed to build the loyalty of a large community around the creation and sharing of animated content.

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Imgur

Founded in 2009, Imgur is a multi-purpose American site. It offers a wide range of media, including animated GIFs, short videos, images, and memes.

When launched, Imgur is growing in harmony with Reddit. However, in 2016, this agreement broke down when Reddit introduced its own hosting service pictures.

Despite its advantages, Imgur has some disadvantages. On the one hand, its diverse offering requires specifying “gif” when searching for Animated GIFs. On the other hand, the GIF thumbnails on the site are not animated.

Additionally, Imgur focuses largely on the American audience, and only offers an English interface. This can be disconcerting for non-English speaking users or those looking for more international content.

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Reddit

Created in 2005, Reddit is an American platform. It is defined at the crossroads of community forums and information sharing.

Indeed, Reddit is a space open to all subjects and all cultures. Users share links, prompting reactions often expressed through images, including animated GIFs. In addition, specific directories are dedicated to sharing these.

In its early days, Reddit did not store image content, but worked closely with Imgur. However, in 2016, a major development took place: Reddit chose to host its own content, aiming to keep its audience on its platform.

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