Flickr has launched a brand new version of its iPhone and Android apps, Flickr v3.0, complete with a redesigned interface that users have already begun comparing with Instagram. The new app adds automatic uploads to the cloud - Flickr bumped its free storage to 1TB for users a year ago - with a UI that looks, frankly familiar; however, what Instagram doesn't have is the same sort of organizational tools Flickr has built in.
Vine has added Vine messages to its video sharing app, allowing users to send private video clips to their friends in a similar way to Instagram Direct. The new feature allows for video and text message sharing with both Vine and non-Vine users, while the app update also includes color options for individual Vine profiles.
Instagram for Android has been updated with a new UI and faster performance, including making the app fit more comfortably on smaller-screen handsets. The app should now load twice as fast as before, Instagram claims, while having had its overall size cut by half so that it takes up less space on your Android smartphone or tablet, as well as increasing overall speed.
There's a little bit of a shift going on at Instagram, one that makes the person-to-person exchange a real deal. This update is called "Instagram Direct", and it's essentially a messaging service inside the photo-taking social network. This update is coming to iOS today in Instagram 5.0, Android's Instagram 5.0 today as well - the Windows Phone version is still classified as being in beta mode, so we'll be waiting a bit longer on that front.
Invites have been sent today to a collection of Instagram users and press alike, these invites containing a block of wood with an Instagram photo printed up front. These blocks are approximately 4-inches wide and 4-inches tall and have a hole at the back made for hanging. These blocks could very well mean that Instagram is moving forward with physical printing on a variety of objects in the near future.
If there was any doubt that the likes of Instagram and Snapchat were in a head-on battle before, they've all been erased with news of a relatively major employee change-up. This push includes an Instagram (read: Facebook) business lead in charge of advertising for the photo-sharing group leaving, and heading to Snapchat to become their COO. This former business lead for Facebook's Instagram unit goes by the name Emily White.
Instagram has indicated that this year's Thanksgiving Day was its busiest day ever. More photos and videos were shared on its network on that day than on any other day in its history. However, the company did not release exact figures, possibly indicating its growth may not be as marked as in previous years.
Sharing images has become an increasingly streamlined process over the years -- pull out a smartphone, take a picture, upload it to Instagram or a similar service and perhaps tag friends you want to notice it. If you find that such a process has become dull, there's now another option: confectionery printing onto cube-shaped marshmallows, which can then be offered to others.
Having seen the writing on the wall, Instagram appears to be preparing for head-on battle with the likes of Snapchat for social micro-networking supremacy on the smartphone. Reports today suggest that Instagram will be rolling out private messaging before too long, allowing people to send images and videos direct to one another without the pesky in-between of the public. Snapchat’s mainstay, meanwhile, remains the self-destructing messaging market.
Instagram for Windows Phone arrives today, landing in the Windows Phone Store complete with Live Tile support. However, the much-anticipated app is lacking a few features compared to its iOS and Android cousins, most notably that video support isn't present at release. Whereas the existing apps for other platforms allow short video clips to be recorded and shared, Windows Phone users will need to wait for a future update to get that functionality.
Instagram's first ad ran on Friday as promised, confirmed the image sharing company with PCWorld this weekend. The ad represents the inaugural insertion of a permanent advertising program for the app. It depicts a high-end watch by fashion designer Michael Kors, in situ with a gold-leafed coffee mug, some colorful comestibles, and a travel-related photo postcard.