Last week, the buzz was all about Facebook acquiring Instagram – the world’s most successful (30 million users) mobile photo sharing app. To be honest, ever since I gave into the idea of owning an iPhone a few months ago, I’ve been quite addicted to this photo sharing app. I’ve always liked snapping quick pictures with my phone camera. To me, that’s a way to document little happy moments that can be easily forgotten otherwise. Instagram’s filters help to make the pictures more artsy, and then get social by sharing them with friends. It also lets me discover new people to follow by interests – hash tags work great for that. My current top 3 Instagramers whose pictures always put a smile on my face are @veganfoodshare, @da0da and @kinax.
But who would have thought that a picture can be worth $1 billion?..
Mark Zuckerberg stressed Facebook’s interest in working closely with Instagram team to expand from sharing photos with your friends and family to sharing mobile photos with people based on your interests. But is that really Facebook’s main interest? I highly doubt it.
The main difference between the two social networks is that: While Instagram is still a user-generated platform (with brands catching up very slowly and unintrusively), Facebook has a significant amount of brand-generated content with its Sponsored Stories, Ads and other ways to monetize the social networking giant. When the news about the acquisition broke, a lot of Instagramers revolted, unhappy with the idea that Facebook might turn Instagram into something that it’s not. But why does that have to be bad? I am not very keen on this idea either, but if you think about it… What happened to YouTube after it was acquired by Google? It flourished! Not that Instagram needs any help growing, but now that the deed is done, why not try to think of all the possible good outcomes of this acquisition? For example, now there’s a high chance that the Instagram plugin on Facebook will work correctly… finally.
Anyway, the rest of the story is up to Mr. Zuckerberg, all I have to say is that I hope that Instagram’s authenticity will be preserved. Meaning, please don’t attempt to turn “Your Photos” into a “Timeline”. That could lead to a new record of mass deactivation of a mobile app. And one more thing, which I completely agree with Mashable’s Christina Warren on: Keep it mobile only!
What are some of your favorite instagram users? I’d love to check them out!
p.s. If you’re not an owner of Instagram-compatible iPhone or Android, you can check out what the app is all about on Statigram. It’s also a great way to see your stats if you’re an existing Instagram user.