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Instagram - Burbn Inc.

Instagram iPhone App Review.

It allows, neh, it empowers users to share their photos, their Kodak moments, their memories, if you will, with the world. Its community counts over 80 million users and its Facebook-acquisition has been the talk of the tech world. Its AppStore description reads on the first line simply: Instagram.

What is it?

For those of you who've lived under a rock for the last two years, Instagram is the iPhone app to have with you if you're into photography and sharing your photos. Although it currently has strong competition from the likes of Flickr and 500px, Instagram is still the app on everyone's lips and its name is still the source of inspiration for so-many Insta-apps in the AppStore.

It's dead easy to use. Open the app, create your free account, and start taking pictures. Tap the camera button in the middle of the tab bar, snap a picture or pick one from the Camera roll and choose from a multitude of beautiful filters specifically designed to make your photos gorgeous. And share. Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, Foursquare, or even Email. You can do them all from one simple screen. It stands as an example of beautiful design combined with thoughtful interactions.

Meet the photo stream

Sharing is fun, for sure. But so is seeing other people's photos on display. "Aw, look at the cute cat" or "Loving the new recipe @jamieoliver" - no matter what you're into, an Instagrammer is sharing it out there. You choose who to follow and once you follow them, you'll see all the pictures they share with the rest of the world. You can either keep in touch with your office co-worker or enjoy a stream of photos taken by Beyonce half way around the world in a concert.

You can like a photo by simply double-tapping on it or be kind enough and leave a comment. The sharing is sincere, there's no privacy control or other convoluted settings. It's share and enjoy. So what are you waiting for? Invite your friends to join you. You can do so via the app's own Find friends setting. Super easy.

And then came the Facebook-aquisition

I remember so many pissed-of users. Facebook this, Facebook that. Our experience will be ruined by all the Facebook jerks. It's been almost 10 months since the announcement and Instagram has continued to grow at a steady rate. I believe the initial reaction had a lot to do with Facebook limiting the experience to a Facebook-only universe. Instagram only allowed to share photos on Facebook and only follow Facebook friends. But it hasn't happened. The Instagram experience has remained more or less the same.

Earlier this month, Instagram dropped support for photo embedding in tweets, so sharing an Instagram photo on Twitter will no longer show the photo within the tweet, but rather just display a link to it. It's a noticeable effort to drive more people toward Instagram's own website, by implicitly driving users away from Twitter. It's no doubt the move has Facebook written all over it.

But eventually, Instagram will need to figure out a way to monetize. In a recent interview with Facebook's VP Carolyn Everson (link here), the question of "Will you put ads in Instagram" was cunningly dodged with the simple answer that "Eventually we'll figure out a way to monetize Instagram." This doesn't necessarily mean that the revenue will come from adding sponsored ads in users' photo stream. But it doesn't mean that it won't happen either. After all, the $1 Billion acquisition price needs to be justified.

Screenshots

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Instagram icon

Instagram
Developer: Burbn Inc.
Category: Photo & Video
Version reviewed: 3.2.0
Price: FREE

Our Rating

5 / 5

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iPhone Review Posted in App Reviews, Music & Photo
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