It’s now a part of social activity for most Internet users, showing what they see and how they look, what they create and what they just ate. Instagram is constantly developing, and my love for it is a decade long story. Now the app is run by Facebook team, but that’s where they didn’t go wrong.
I was with Instagram almost since its beginning, so I remember its very core: processing photos made with a mediocre camera, so its mediocrity becomes rather a feature than a bug, and then publishing them with this very app. Cameras got much better since that time, filters became a must, and performance increased, but basically it’s the same.
If you like someone’s photos, just follow them. And if they like yours, they’ll follow you. Like in other social media, you can update your statuses, but it requires a picture.
Now Instagram has a large set of other features: video support, private messaging, geotags, multiple pics in one post, commenting, tagging other people on your pics, and so on. The most interesting innovation for most user is stories: ephemeral posts that disappear within a day, letting the world know what you’re about this time.
Still there are some things one cannot do with Instagram. Downloading photos isn’t officially supported. Reposting other users’ photos requires separate apps.
Ease of Use (10/10)
Run the app, start its camera, shoot. Apply filter or adjust manually. Write a caption, don’t forget a ton of hashtags. Select where else you want it to share (Twitter, Facebook, or so). Then publish and collect hearts; that’s the algorithm.
There’s no important element that’s hidden too deep in the menus. Everything is clear and obvious, intuitive and visual. Just like it should be for such a visual app.
The Instagram app looks familiar, and that’s the right way. You can easily make it out, even if since its launch you somehow managed to ignore it. The pictograms speak for themselves, the buttons unmistakably mean actions, and the pics take most of the space, like they should.
For most users, Instagram is free; yet sometimes you see commercials in your stream, and that’s what keeps the service alive. I don’t mind, frankly speaking, because many of these commercials advertise things I really want, like clothes, concerts, gadgets, and stuff. Location-based targeting saves us from seeing the ads we cannot make use of. So let it be.
In our visual era, Instagram is probably the most important social media, and it’s loved by most of its users. It connects people in a most informal way, and though many of its users require extra features, basically it has all it takes to share your world visually.
- Easy to make, process, and publish your photos
- Lots of great users you can subscribe to
- Private messaging and stories
- It’s a great marketplace (and a vanity fair, too)
- Integrated with Facebook
- Lacks some features (saving or sharing photos)
- It makes your private life too public if you abuse it