Instagram, a small 10 man company, has managed to develop a mobile application that has caught fire and reached over 10 million users in just under a year. Instagram is a social application centered around smartphone picture editing and has been growing rapidly popular because of what it offers its users.

Instagram brings several features to its users that separate it from other photo editing applications, lets take a look at a couple:

  1. Quality – With the advancements of smartphone digital cameras, applications like Instagram have higher quality images to work with, allowing them more editing options to incorporate.
  2. Social Audience – Not just a social community, Instagram is a social community just like Flickr,  but its immediacy (being on a mobile device), and its easy access to multiple communities (Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Foursquare, and more) create an audience different from other photo editing applications.
  3. Image Presentation – Many users familiar with Flickr and communities like Flickr are used to looking at a gallery. Instagram’s social sharing features allow its users to highlight particular images, eliminating the gallery.

The questions will always remain as to whether applications like these are fads, will there popularity slide after time? Certainly Instagram has factors that will allow it the opportunity to be in for the long haul. Its integration with social media and the evolution of smartphone digital cameras being two of the main reasons. In the interim, the guys at Instagram have done a nice job of creating an application that fills a niche and making it high quality to stand out above its competition.

What do you think of Instagram? If you have downloaded it, do you use it regularly? Will apps like Instagram stick around or burn out? Leave a comment below and let us know.

Instagram Roller Coasterimage credit: Jessica Lares on flickr

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